Market Reality: Microsoft & Lenovo See Differing Results from AR Headsets, WaveOptics Preps Next-Gen Smartglasses

Microsoft & Lenovo See Differing Results from AR Headsets, WaveOptics Preps Next-Gen Smartglasses

The price tag for the Microsoft HoloLens might be out of range for the average consumer's budget, but for enterprises, like BAE Systems, adopting the AR headset is yielding a return on the investment. And for those with even slimmer wallets, Best Buy just made the Lenovo Mirage, part of the Star Wars: Jedi Challenges package, more affordable.

However, individual consumers and enterprise clients may find even more affordable options by the end of next year as WaveOptics strikes a partnership to manufacture their waveguide displays at lower cost.

BAE Systems Finds Benefits in Training Through Microsoft HoloLens

While some in the augmented reality space are tweeting about future amazing immersive experiences and others are showing off cool experiments, Microsoft continues to move forward with tangible business solutions right now that show how the HoloLens can improve business.

In the latest example, Microsoft reveals how BAE Systems is using PTC's Thingworx Studio software on the HoloLens to improve employee training. Specifically, BAE produced a new visual training tool that takes workers, step by step, through the process of assembling green energy bus batteries.

Keep reading to learn more about how BAE Systems is helping its employees become more efficient with HoloLens...

Image by Microsoft/YouTube

REALITY BITES: Augmented reality proponents are excited about what Apple will bring to the table in terms of AR wearables, and with good reason. Veteran Apple analyst and tech consultant Tim Bajarin explores how Apple will apply its legacy of innovation in user interfaces to smartglasses.

Best Buy Offers Refurbished Lenovo Star Wars AR Kits at Deep Discount

If $200 was too much for you to get in on some Star Wars augmented reality action, Best Buy is now selling refurbished Star Wars Jedi Challenges sets for $79.99.

Even better, Star Wars fans who order one today at standard shipping will likely receive their heavily-discounted unit in time for May the 4th Be With You day, the annual celebration of all things Star Wars.

Keep reading to find out what this may mean for the early returns on the first mainstream AR headset...

Image by Lenovo/YouTube

REALITY BITES: In a recent Medium post, Paul Reynolds, the CEO and co-founder of AR/VR startup Torch, explains why he believes the technology industry needs to change its approach to developing AR/VR experiences.

WaveOptics Taps EV Group to Lower Production Cost of Waveguides for Smartglasses

On Thursday, waveguide maker WaveOptics announced that semiconductor and microelectromechanical systems supplier EV Group (EVG) will provide the manufacturing infrastructure for the production of its waveguide displays designed to support lower-cost, third-party augmented reality wearables.

One of the key components of smartglasses and AR headsets that facilitates their augmented reality functionality is the waveguide. The waveguide transfers (or guides) light from the light source, such as a micro projector, toward the user's eyes, allowing users to see digital content in their natural field of view.

This deal might end up having a huge impact the availability of affordable smartglasses for enterprise companies and consumers within the next two years, keep reading to find out why...

Image by WaveOptics/Vimeo

REALITY BITES: Speaking of the future of AR, in a recent Medium post, Jason Friedlander, the senior director of product marketing for Verizon Digital Media Services, says content creators should already be preparing for the day that AR reaches the early majority on the adoption curve.

Every Friday, Next Reality reviews the latest headlines from the financial side of augmented and mixed reality. This weekly Market Reality column covers funding announcements, mergers and acquisitions, market analysis, and the like. Check out previous editions of Market Reality for more news you may have missed.

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Cover image via WaveOptics

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