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Microsoft reveals HoloLens AR headset with Windows 10 APIs

At its big Windows 10 press event yesterday, Microsoft unveiled a wireless augmented reality (AR) headset which it boasts will unlock the future of holographic computing.

Microsoft’s HoloLens overlays 3D “holograms” on the real world around you, which you can view through the high-definition lenses of the lightweight headset – you can then interact with these, using gestures, or indeed voice commands.

There are no wires necessary for this piece of hardware at all, and indeed it doesn’t need to be connected to a phone or PC. HoloLens is a standalone device which is powered by a SoC and Holographic Processing Unit (HPU) that interprets your interactions with the world, along with an array of sensors. Spatial sound effects will also be placed to help further immersion.

Windows 10 will come with a set of APIs to allow developers to build holographic experiences.

Microsoft said: “With Windows 10, holograms are Windows universal apps, and all Windows universal apps can also work as holograms — making it possible to place three-dimensional holograms in the physical world and enabling new ways to communicate, create and explore that are more personal and human.”

Clever stuff indeed, but what the reality of this device will be is uncertain at this point – while it could be out at the end of this year alongside Windows 10, we’re probably looking at further down the line for a release, and a fair bit of development still.