IT LOOKS LIKE Microsoft is plotting to launch its second-generation HoloLens headset at Mobile World Congress (MWC) next month.
While Redmond has typically dodged the Barcelona conference since killing off its Windows Phone OS, the firm has sent out invites (below) to a press event being held at this year's MWC on 24 February at 5 pm CET (4 pm UK time).
The actual invite gives little away, but The Verge notes that with Microsoft technical fellow Alex Kipman set to appear alongside CEO Satya Nadella, we're likely going to see the unveiling of the HoloLens 2 given his close involvement with the project.
Though the launch is still more than a month away, we already know what we can expect from Microsoft's next-gen face-worn wearable. Recent rumours claim it'll pack a Snapdragon 850 SoC, ditching the Intel Atom CPU currently packing the first-gen model.
This Qualcomm chip will come paired with a custom-made AI processor, a tidbit of info that Microsoft has already confirmed.
This means that HoloLens 2 will be able to analyse what the user sees and hears on the device, rather than wasting time by sending the data to the cloud processing, enabling features such as more sophisticated hand-tracking with hand segmentation and on-device voice recognition.
What's more, with a Snapdragon 850 SoC onboard, the Windows Core OS-powered headset will also support LTE speeds of 1.2Gbps thanks to the integrated Snapdragon X20 4G modem.
Microsoft's first Judge Dredd-style headset went on sale in the UK back in 2016, with the firm offering a developer-only version for £2,179 and an enterprise-focused model for £4,529.
Speaking to INQ following the launch, Roger Walkden, Microsoft's HoloLens commercial lead, revealed that sales of the headset are so far in the "thousands," but insisted that's all that the company needs.
"We're not trying to sell hundreds of thousands or millions or anything, it's expensive, and it's not in huge numbers. So we're happy with the level of sales that we've got - I can't tell you anything about the numbers, but it's in thousands, not hundreds of thousands, and that's fine. That's all we need," he said. µ
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