Tag: wearable device

Developer version of HoloLens will start shipping this month

The virtual reality headset from Microsoft will be $3,000 and is being made available for pre-order.

Microsoft has now announced that the developer version of its HoloLens virtual reality headset is going to start to ship on March 30, and that it will be sold at a launch price of $3,000.

This will be occurring at a very similar time to the launch of the Oculus VR device from Facebook.

The major difference is that it will be the consumer version of the Oculus that will be released, whereas the HoloLens will be exclusively for developers. The Oculus Rift virtual reality headset will be shipping for $600. That said, while they are both meant to provide users with a VR experience, these two headsets are designed to be quite different. For example, the HoloLens is meant to allow for a more augmented reality experience, where the user will continue to see the real world surrounding him or her and will see three dimensional digital objects overtop of what is already there.

The Oculus Rift is meant to provide a more virtual reality experience compared to the HoloLens augmented reality.

Augmented Reality Technology - Microsoft HoloLensThe Oculus Rift has been designed to block out the view of the surrounding environment so that an entirely digital, 360 degree three dimensional universe can replace it. The Rift, however, must be tethered to a separate computer, whereas the HoloLens operates on its own, based on Windows 10.

Microsoft’s version runs with a custom-built chip that was created for use on an Intel platform. It will also provide users with the ability to record HD video that will not only include the image of the real world, but that will also allow for a digital overlay of holographs. In this way, the user’s view can be shared with other people who don’t actually have the device.

These two major players will clearly become fast rivals in the augmented and virtual reality markets, which remains in its infancy. It will be interesting to watch the progress they make as consumers first get their hands on one device and as developers start to tinker with the other.

Wearable technology gets a shot in the arm from Penn Hills police

New cameras in police cars in the municipality in Pennsylvania could bring wearables to officers.

Police cars in Penn Hills, Pennsylvania are now being outfitted with cameras, leading some to believe that this may be the first major step toward the use of wearable technology by officers in the area.

Penn Hills Police Chief Howard Burton has submitted a request for the funds necessary for 20 vehicle cameras.

This would provide in-car camera technology for 20 vehicles used by his officers. The request was made for the funding to be worked into the municipal budget for 2016. According to Burton, the estimated cost for the 20 cameras is around $144,000. Though the cars driven by police officers have already been outfitted with cameras, that technology is rapidly becoming outdated and Burton feels that the police and the people in Penn Hills would be better served if the tech was replaced by new ones compatible with wearable technology.

That said, while they would be wearable technology compatible, there are no immediate intentions for wearables.

Wearable Technology - PoliceFor example, Burton specifically pointed out that there aren’t any plans to outfit officers with wearables that would record audio or video. He explained that “I think this is the direction everyone is moving in.”

He also said that there are a range of issues that have yet to be ironed out by legislators when it comes to laws surrounding practices such as wiretapping and the length of time that wearable camera videos should be stored by police departments. Also being discussed are concerns regarding the affordability of storing recorded videos from wearables and the ways in which requests for those stored videos should be handled while the incident in question is still under investigation.

Pennsylvania laws do not contain any specific regulation against the use of cameras in wearable technology, but Harrisburg legislators are currently considering a bill that would create a wire tap law amendment that would then make it possible for police to record video while within homes, but would also be able to stop public access to whatever was recorded by that wearable equipment.