With Virtual Reality really coming into its own recently, Microsoft have developed their own “magical” mixed reality virtual experience for business and leisure. Their “HoloLens developer kit” was originally designed to take the engineering and construction industries to a new level with advancements in 3D modelling, allowing project workers and clients alike to explore sites in order to gain greater clarification early on in the design process. However, creators have been overwhelmed by commercial interest in the product for potential use by brands in interacting with consumers. By mixing reality with technological supplements, the HoloLens allows actual surroundings to be incorporated into the user’s view – much like Augmented Reality – whilst fully interactive 3D holograms are overlaid in front of your eyes. The HoloLens allows simultaneous interaction for consumers to explore the same virtual area at the same time, even whilst at opposite sides of the world.
The future of virtual experiences such as the HoloLens allow marketing teams to share upcoming products with consumers, allowing pre-launch sampling or testing, and generating buzz and word of mouth advertising. The device also records individual consumers’ experiences, allowing the footage to be stitched together and used as social content to further extend the products online reach.
Additionally, the HoloLens can be used to draw consumers into an activation area both in the lead up to and during events. With the ever increasing desire for deeper fan engagement in sporting and music events, we can see there is huge untapped potential for use in any number of capacities when it is eventually released, which is rumoured to be in 2018.