Project Alloy and Windows Holographic
Last week at the Intel Developer Forum (IDF 2016) in San Fransico, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich unveiled Intel's vision for the future of virtual and augmented reality; merged reality (MR). Virtual reality is, of course, a buzz word, but Intel's dedication to the VR/AR scene can't be overlooked. Throughout IDF 2016, multiple new and cutting edge technologies were displayed; half the time I couldn't help but realize that they are all small pieces to a much bigger puzzle.
I saw Intel's Project Alloy, which takes multiple technologies (some Intel) and merges them into a groundbreaking piece of hardware. The headset is totally self-contained with an array of RealSense cameras, battery pack, and even a 6th generation processor for onboard computing. It should come out in 2017.
Don't get the wrong idea; Intel isn't saying the upcoming future of VR is only wireless headsets, but instead they have broken up headsets into mainstream and enthusiast segments. If you think about it, we already have many wireless and totally contained VR headsets in the form of the Galaxy VR and other smartphone-based VR headsets. Intel would consider Project Alloy as a much more powerful headset that offers more versatility and horsepower than current offerings, and I think we would consider it a mainstream VR headset.
We were also teased by Windows Holographic. Over the past year, Microsoft has been touting its augmented reality HoloLens, which looks to change the way we interact with reality. Windows 10 will bring an update that includes Windows Holographic sometime next year.
Windows Holographic will offer desktop applications that we can touch and interact with in 3D. There are limitless uses for such software, but bringing it to the masses through Windows 10 will push the PC market forward.
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