On March 30, 2016, Microsoft announced at the annual Build conference that the HoloLens Developer Suite was officially launched in the US and Canada for $3,000. On May 10th, 2017, Microsoft announced the entry of HoloLens into China, with commercial packages and developer versions priced at 39,188 yuan and 23,488 yuan respectively.
In the first year of HoloLens' entry into China, Microsoft also introduced the first year of China's new progress: becoming the second largest market outside the United States, 12 local mixed reality partners, education, medical, construction, automotive, manufacturing, The application of aerospace, radio and television; and the Ministry of Education reached a strategic cooperation for the establishment of a mixed reality laboratory to jointly cultivate relevant talents.
Jared Andersen, director of Microsoft China's marketing strategy, said that it is inconvenient to disclose specific sales, number of developers, number of partners, and number of applications. However, it is certain that China has become the second largest market for Microsoft HoloLens.
In contrast to the non-promotional HoloLens, Microsoft gave a large number of lectures to four partners, demonstrating the application scenarios of Microsoft's mixed reality technology in the architectural design, healthcare, automotive manufacturing, and education industries.
Among them, in the architectural design industry, Huajian Digital, a subsidiary of Huadong Construction Group, has created a digital solution for the entire process of construction projects, enabling designers, users, construction companies and other engineering stakeholders to interact in a mixed reality world. The design, progress, and progress of architectural projects are displayed, modified, and shared, bringing a three-dimensional perspective and an efficient experience for architectural design and construction.
In the medical and health industry, VZ Zhuoyuan Medical Technology, based on Microsoft HoloLens, has created a solution for clinical medicine, medical education, and medical research. It has been used in the planning of surgical procedures and communication between doctors and patients in over 100 hospitals nationwide. In the case of intraoperative assisted navigation and other settings, Prof. Ye Zhewei from the Department of Orthopaedics at the Union Hospital of Tongji Medical College of Huazhong University of Science and Technology used this system to complete the world's first remote coordinated orthopedic surgery assisted by Microsoft HoloLens.
In the automotive manufacturing industry, DataMesh has created a solution for manufacturing maintenance training by integrating Microsoft HoloLens mixed reality technology, Surface products, Azure and Office 365 cloud services, PowerBI data visualization services, and artificial intelligence technologies. The virtual sandbox of the automobile production environment is projected into the real environment and displays all aspects of the automobile production process in a real-time interactive manner.
In the education industry, Lenovo has used Microsoft's mixed reality technology, Azure Cloud Services, and Office 365 to create solutions for the education industry, released the "Elephant Innovation Classroom", and applied them at Tsinghua Middle School in Shanghai.
36 Ye also experienced these Demos after the conference. At the moment, it is still a simple display experience. Compared with many products on the market, Microsoft HoloLens is actually better at the experience. However, subject to the current overall technical level of the industry, it also determines that such experience is still the main function of the conference's publicity and display at the current stage, and it is still necessary to wait for the technology to mature when it truly enters the workflow.
Lorraine Bardeen, director of Microsoft's Mixed Reality Studio, expressed his appreciation for the progress of the application. She analyzes, new technologies, and customers have to go through three stages: concept assessment, pilot phase, and promotion deployment; while in China, the transitional speed of these three phases is very satisfactory. Now many customers are in the pilot phase, but There are also customers into the promotion and deployment phase & rdquo;.
To some extent, the landing exploration of Microsoft's partners has also provided reference value for more companies in the industry. This may be a potential market for MR applications in the future. Lorraine Bardeen stated that Microsoft's HoloLens has been listed on the market for two years. Through cooperation with hundreds of customers, it has discovered that remote assistance, space planning, training and development, product development writing, and obtaining spatial data from IoT devices are the workflow The highest value.
Although the official sales data has not yet been given, the media recently revealed that Microsoft has sold about 50,000 copies of HoloLens so far. One view is that high prices limit the large-scale application of HoloLens. Although considering the tax revenue, the price of 23488 is very sincere, but the price of a single device that exceeds 20,000 yuan will also need to spend hundreds of thousands or more (and entrepreneurs may feedback more than tens of millions of dollars) in price development and application. Need to use more than one device in coordination, so that the cost of the final landing is high.
Lorraine Bardeen explained that the pricing is mainly based on HoloLens positioning, positioning the product at the beginning of the design "independent computing equipment, can be combined with reality", which determines the high cost of its parts and production; now generally speaking This position is correct and will not change.
The mismatch between supply and demand is often an important factor constraining the commercialization of new technologies. The mixed reality field is no exception. Microsoft HoloLens is indeed the optimal hybrid display device that can be purchased at the moment, but even without considering the cost and the selling price, the outside world is still looking forward to product iteration and improvement. Previously there were rumors that the new generation of HoloLens is under development and is expected to bring significant progress before the beginning of 2019.
36 Didn't get a positive or negative answer from Lorraine Bardeen. As Alex Kipman, the father of HoloLens, told us in a recent media interview, Lorraine Bardeen also stated that "In the future, HoloLens will have a new custom holographic processing unit (HPU) that will be equipped with an AI co-processor that is flexible in a local manner. Achieve Deep Neural Networks ”. This means that the new generation of HoloLens may be able to analyze visual data locally without sending any data to the cloud, allowing faster recognition of objects and environments. In addition, old HoloLens users will also receive updates on software products in the near future. Starting May 22, Microsoft will provide existing HoloLens customers with a limited-time, free preview of Microsoft Remote Assist and Microsoft Layout applications.