30 Second Impression - Microsoft's HoloLens

Quick note on our first HoloLens impression…it’s incredible. We ordered a few of them and we’re truly gunning to use them for future product launches, activations and other events. And honestly? We’d take a big stake in what this device is going to be capable of in the near future.

For this blog, I wanted to take a quick 30 seconds and touch upon a few things about my initial interaction with HoloLens. There will definitely be more down the road, but you never get a first impression twice, and I wanted to pen my thoughts.

As with every single tech device here early in the 21st century, the products advertised never fully live up to the potential of how they’re marketed. Take for instance the HoloLens demo video at E3 a full year ago, featuring Minecraft. Awesome and mind-blowing right? Well, not so fast….those demos and product launches most likely took hundreds of developers and creatives to pull off an event like that.

And that’s fine. Of course, we want to see the full-scale of what HoloLens is capable of. But being like every other person whose jaw hit the ground when we first saw what HoloLens is capable of, we don’t want to be lied to, or misled. We need to know how hard it will be to recreate those experiences we first saw, like Alex Kipman’s TED Talk. 

In reality, HoloLens CAN do a lot already. But even their launch video citing – ‘Change Your World With Holograms’ is a bit misleading. Watch this video and notice how smooth each and every one of these holograms are, when in reality, they look like this (below).


But you know what? THAT’S OK! Microsoft HoloLens did the right thing by releasing their ‘Development Edition‘ first, which we have. Instead of Microsoft coming out and saying, “We have all the answers, here’s a device that does anything and everything.” They turned around and put the power in the publics hands. Genius.

Something Google Glass should have learned from the beginning. Power to the people…

Side note: Here’s our Creative Director Kevin Lee trying on HoloLens for the very first time. 


Other key takeaways from my first 30 seconds with HoloLens…

 We’re a bit upset the peripheral vision isn’t more immersive. It very much feels like we’re wearing a clunky set of glasses. Maybe because we are?

 Also, we know we look ridiculous, but for as immersive as HoloLens is. It’s completely worth it.

 POTENTIAL. POTENTIAL. POTENTIAL. Cannot stress this enough. Love the move Microsoft did by releasing the ‘Developer Version’ first. Smaller agencies (like us) and other companies will figure out a way to unlock the full potential of HoloLens.

 Sadly, all the demo videos on YouTube have raised the bar of expectations too high. The immersive experiences they marketed to the public do not equate to the first ‘Out of the box’ experiences.

 Initial (and preset) holograms out-of-the-box are OK, at best. They very much feel like cheesy Atari 3D renderings. It is going to take more than a few developers to craft fully immersive 3D holograms that ‘feel real.’

 The motion sensors to open up a larger menu and voice activated recognition is awesome. As much as I’ve complained about previous A.I.’s (e.g. Cortana and Siri) not being well versed in (English?) voice commands, Cortana definitely seems to have gotten an upgrade. And that’s a good thing.

Final takeaway:  We’re going to figure out how to make HoloLens extremely applicable to the experiential world. The term, ‘Experiential’ will no longer be applied to marketing and advertising agencies. HoloLens will systematically change the way we ‘work.’ By adding an existing layer to our already 3D world, HoloLens will forever leave it’s initial mark, as well as leave the door open for an exciting wave of innovation here in the first quarter of the 21st century. 

If you’re an interested client or agency looking to use Microsoft HoloLens and explore it’s capabilities. Or if you want to see Inphantry’s full capabilities deck, please get ahold of our New Business guy, Cam King at: cam@inphantry.com 

Follow @Inphantry on Twitter. Also, follow @CamKing747 on Twitter.

P.S. Still waiting for my days to start like this guys down below. Do they even know about HoloLens in Maui yet?