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Microsoft Hololens Development Edition is Out of Stock

Claude Fortin
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The Microsoft Hololens in its Development Edition is out of sock on the Microsoft online store. What appears as simple news could have different repercussions and hidden interpretations. Is it possible that the technology giant did not have their demand forecasts right? I doubt. My interpretations to the news are many, of which at least one could be true.
 
- Microsoft will be discontinuing the Hololens 1, specially that its second Hololens generation "Hololens 2" is expected to hit the market early 2019. However, recent rumors speculates that the launching of  Hololens 2 might be delayed until the end of 2019. If the speculations are true, the Development Edition will remains out of stock until then.
 
- Microsoft is opening up the rental market for the Hololens. When the Development Edition is out of stock, developers can decide to rent the product from a certified dealer until the product is available, instead of buying the Commercial Suite. In both cases, the company is benefiting through its commercial or rental deals.
 
- It could be that Microsoft is going to discontinue its Hololens line. It could be that the product is not generating revenues as estimated, and accordingly the company could have realized that the projected profits will never come. By discontinuing the technology, Microsoft will be minimizing its losses until a more convenient product is developed. I am putting this speculation out there, simply because two days ago, the Commercial edition became out of stock at the Singapore market. This might be the start of a snowballing pattern.
 
- Recently Microsoft won a $480 million deal with the US army, to supply them with 100,000 Hololenses. A final speculation would be that they are using all the stocks in hand for their projects.
 
Please note those are only my personal speculations and interpretations, where any other scenarios are also possible. 
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I completely forgot about the hololens so this is news that they actually sold them at all..

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Just now, RorzNZ said:

I completely forgot about the hololens so this is news that they actually sold them at all..

Yeah it was very impressive considering magic leap got billions of dollars and years of research and produced a clunkier version of what Microsoft made many years before it

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Just keeping this here as a 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1 minute ago, RorzNZ said:

I completely forgot about the hololens so this is news that they actually sold them at all..

They sell. Not at the consumer level, mostly due to cost, of course.

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7 minutes ago, RorzNZ said:

I completely forgot about the hololens so this is news that they actually sold them at all..

They already sold over 50,000 devices for developers. I do not know how many for commercial use.

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What are they developing...

Virtual floating potato that only other developers with a hololens can see?

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3 minutes ago, Enderman said:

What are they developing...

Virtual floating potato that only other developers with a hololens can see?

Actually they have a lot of serious business use cases. I guess the army one could be most promising. 

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2 minutes ago, Claude Fortin said:

Actually they have a lot of serious business use cases. I guess the army one could be most promising. 

Well they already have stuff like it though....

Image result for fighter jet helmet display

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10 minutes ago, GoodBytes said:

1) For the simulations the hololens is literally just acting as a large monitor in front of your face. Nothing that couldn't be done with a regular display like it has been for decades.

 

2) Great, now you need to pay an extra 50 people to read the thousands of pages of instruction manuals and spend thousands of hours programming them into a virtual reality 3d reality space, instead of just having the assemblers do the reading, very efficient.

 

3) Must be some very incompetent employees if you need to give them a virtual world for them to learn how to replace fuses and unscrew things ?

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14 minutes ago, Enderman said:

1) For the simulations the hololens is literally just acting as a large monitor in front of your face. Nothing that couldn't be done with a regular display like it has been for decades.

Incorrect. 3D objects are spacial aware. Meaning if you turn your head they move out of your sight, you turn back your head, they are back exactly where it was in the 3D Augmented Reality space.

 

Quote

2) Great, now you need to pay an extra 50 people to read the thousands of pages of instruction manuals and spend thousands of hours programming them into a virtual reality 3d reality space, instead of just having the assemblers do the reading, very efficient.

Very efficient actually. You learn better visually and hands on, as a human, than reading text and interpreting the best you can what is being said.

In addition, it allows easy troubleshooting and bring engineer and technicians together. No more: Technician: "It doesn't work, you do shit work", Engineer: "You suck at following instructions, it works!" disputes, only to conclude that one of them is wrong or it was a miss understanding from the doc writers. You bring both together, so that a solution is analyses, and solution is in the works within minutes.

 

Quote

3) Must be some very incompetent employees if you need to give them a virtual world for them to learn how to replace fuses and unscrew things ?

Ok, so show them how it is done. We will see who is laughing at the end. I expect you to get promoted several times, rapidly. You'll get a big wage too.

Tell that to your surgeon before doing a life threatening operation. I mean it is just cutting and putting things together... easy as building a PC, no?

It is easy to talk when you know nothing about nothing. When you can't assemble an IKEA furniture without mistake yourself, don't laugh at people building elevators, A/C systems, car engines, plane engine, etc.

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3 minutes ago, Enderman said:

1) For the simulations the hololens is literally just acting as a large monitor in front of your face. Nothing that couldn't be done with a regular display like it has been for decades.

 

2) Great, now you need to pay an extra 50 people to read the thousands of pages of instruction manuals and spend thousands of hours programming them into a virtual reality 3d reality space, instead of just having the assemblers do the reading, very efficient.

 

3) Must be some very incompetent employees if you need to give them a virtual world for them to learn how to replace fuses and unscrew things ?

There are other interesting use cases:

4) Education, seeing 3 dimensional concepts in 3d is more intuitive: https://youtu.be/SKpKlh1-en0

 

5) BIM, building information modeling, seeing the architectural models on top of the real setting to help in  project development: https://youtu.be/kXVW4sUsh3A 

 

 

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9 minutes ago, GoodBytes said:

Very efficient actually. You learn better visually and hands on, as a human, than reading text and interpreting the best you can what is being said.

In addition, it allows easy troubleshooting and bring engineer and technicians together. No more: Technician: "It doesn't work, you do shit work", Engineer: "You suck at following instructions, it works!" disputes, only to conclude that one of them is wrong or it was a miss understanding from the doc writers. You bring both together, so that a solution is analyses, and solution is in the works within minutes.

I don't think you understand.

Instead of the instructions going from engineers -> builders now it goes engineers -> programmers -> builders.

It's an extra step, more time, more money, more chances of error.

There is no learning here, it literally says in the article that almost everything they build it is the first time building it. When one project is done the next one is completely different so nothing you learnt previously applies.

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Just now, Enderman said:

I don't think you understand.

Instead of the instructions going from engineers -> builders now it goes engineers -> programmers -> builders.

It's an extra step, more time, more money, more chances of error.

There is no learning here, it literally says in the article that almost everything they build it is the first time building it. When one project is done the next one is completely different so nothing you learnt previously applies.

Well that's where the technology is currently at. Just think about what it was like when engineers made the switch from schematics to computer aided design. Early on, the technology was clunky and difficult to use. As the technology got more advanced, so did the ease of use of these types of programs and now you have file types such as DWG and DWF where the software to read them is commonplace, using the example of infrastructure development and Civil Engineering, CAD files are now easily transferable between surveyors, civil engineers, architects, contractors, developers, and city planners. Now these schematics can be 2-D or 3-D objects rendered on a device for reference and are already very useful, but imagining AR technology gets even better and more accessible and easier to work with to the point that software devs are only there to improve the existing user experience and not as a middleman in the design process, we can use augmented reality to do things like find and avoid gas lines and utilities when excavating by seeing their actual physical location rather than on a set of plans depicting where they might be. Using BIM as @Claude Fortin said to see the design full scale in its proposed setting and seeing its relationship with its surroundings and any possible conflicts.

 

I see why you hold your opinion and to your point, right now the way the technology has to be implemented is clunky and error prone, but I also feel that your view on the technology is incredibly shortsighted, because as people work on it and experiment with it in real world applications, it will get better and sooner or later there will be a software that comes out that cuts out the middle man and allows engineers and architects and healthcare professionals to easily and effortlessly use it in their workflow.

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lol I know it will get better and become useful, some of you guys are getting way too offended.

My point is that right now it's gimmick, even though it's being promoted positively.

This is just like those articles every month about a "breakthough battery improvement gives 3x more capacity and charges in 5 minutes"

 

PS- it is completely unreasonable to expect a mechanical engineer to program an assembly manual in a virtual reality 3d space. Even programming 2d games is hard. Also it's not always the design engineers writing the manuals in the first place, that gets typically passed down to manufacturing engineers.

 

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48 minutes ago, Enderman said:

lol I know it will get better and become useful, some of you guys are getting way too offended.

No one is being offended.

VR/AR training is a growing industry. Tools are being made.

Programs don't develop, exact training modules. They build software tools which engineers can use to build training modules for the technicians.

 

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My point is that right now it's gimmick, even though it's being promoted positively.

I worked in the simulation world. and I can tell you,. the gaming stuff, is the only gimmick part. VR/AR is league ahead from the consumer products.

 

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This is just like those articles every month about a "breakthough battery improvement gives 3x more capacity and charges in 5 minutes"

That is because the media is only revealing the information that they get from PR of the company/university. Usually they seek investors, because the process is actually a lot harder to mass produce, too costly, or "looked good on paper, but isn't in real life" type of situations.

 

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PS- it is completely unreasonable to expect a mechanical engineer to program an assembly manual in a virtual reality 3d space. Even programming 2d games is hard. Also it's not always the design engineers writing the manuals in the first place, that gets typically passed down to manufacturing engineers.

In the gaming industry, people tend to use internal tools and libraries. Level designers, for example, use internal level tools. Sometimes these internal tools are made public like StarCraft Map editor, most of the time it isn't. The closer you are in working in the "final stage of the game" in terms of visually (working with how the game is looking like, instead of cubes and rectangles, and checkerboard test planes, the less coding you do, as you "just put stuff together". Heck now Game engine tools even have a drag and drop physics models that can be dropped on any objects, and walking/running models that any characters. No need to code all of that.

 

All this, is possible due to the maturity of industry, and level designer can do level designs and not coding (if we use the example above), allowing the experts on their respective field to focus on what they are experts at and not do things they aren't supposed to do.

 

Same applies for simulation world.

If you have a plane simulators, trainers can set scenarios, like the origin and destination in a global data world, Google Earth style, with a list of airports with search box to quickly jump. Set weather conditions changes based on time of flight, and plane situation, and lots more. They can do stuff like, when the plane reaches or pass x altitude after x amount of time, once the thunderstorm kicks in, engine 1 and 2 fails, and engage smoke simulation in the simulator (yes, actual smoke simulator), and pilot in training is evaluated on the procedures he takes (lower mask at the right time, attempt in doing a safe landing on water, etc.). 0 coding, all GUI based.

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Wars will be like a strategy game with the hololens.

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Is it possible they just got their sums right and the market is approaching saturation so they didn't bother restocking?  Sometimes things just run out and it's not worth restocking for the few sales that might occur.

Grammar and spelling is not indicative of intelligence/knowledge.  Not having the same opinion does not always mean lack of understanding.  

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This might be a very possible scenario, hoping that the Hololnes v2 with its advanced features will open up new possibilities and expand the current market.

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