Microsoft's HoloLens 2 begins shipping today

At the tail end of Microsoft's Ignite 2019 conference, the company announced that it's begun shipping the HoloLens 2. Announced back at Mobile World Congress, the second-generation standalone holographic PC is now ARM-based with a Snapdragon 850, although there's no cellular connectivity.

One of the key changes from the first-gen HoloLens is that interactions are meant to be more instinctual. This is achieved with a combination of hand-tracking and eye-tracking, along with changes to the software. You can easily grab the corner of something to make it larger or smaller, and you can grab the side to move it around.

The idea is that you don't have to spend a lot of time figuring out how to use the HoloLens 2. Your first guess at how you should use it, should be the right away.

"You can do really interesting things with HoloLens, and you can do really interesting things with the cloud," said Julia White, Microsoft corporate vice president of Azure marketing. "But when you see these two things come together, it changes the game in terms of what people can actually do."

Microsoft is also expanding the apps and services that it has for HoloLens, so your company doesn't have to spend months building out its own. For example, Remote Assist allows you to show someone how to do something via augmented reality.

One thing that's clear with the second-generation HoloLens is that Microsoft has more of a vision of what this thing should be. The first time around, the company introduced the technology, and now the Redmond firm has collected telemetry, heard feedback, and refined the product.

The HoloLens 2 starts at $3,500, and there are various bundles that your organization can purchase.

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