December 16, 2015
We’re pretty stoked on the Microsoft HoloLens “Share Your Idea” campaign. Holographic computing and augmented / mixed reality stand to utterly transform the way we perform our jobs (and live our lives). Already we’ve read about some great proposed enterprise applications for the HoloLens technology by Volvo, the first car brand to collaborate with Microsoft, and by Autodesk.
So we are now able to picture car shoppers in the auto showroom of the near future using HoloLens to explore individual vehicle features. Industrial designers, mechanical engineers, and others in product development will also make use of the mixed reality technology to experiment and collaborate on product designs. What else can HoloLens achieve in the workplace?
We combed through the most popular of the nearly 4,000 already submitted concepts to find some intriguing enterprise-related submissions. Of course we couldn’t read through all the proposed applications, so we limited ourselves to just those that had 20 or more “likes.” I’m sure there are lots of great business and industry ideas for HoloLens in the mix; and if you have the time, please share any submissions that we may have overlooked as well as your own ideas at the bottom of this post. Enjoy!
HoloLens for Mechanics
In this idea, dealership technicians would wear HoloLens headsets to view instructions – traditionally printed on a piece of paper – while concentrating on the job at hand. “Lying on an engine,” it’s difficult to follow along with paper instructions. HoloLens could provide the ability to scan parts, recognize and mark drilling locations, walk through removal/installation steps via voice commands, etc. Of course, this idea has applications well beyond a car dealership.
Future of Medicine: MRIs Displayed in 3D with HoloLens
In this idea, HoloLens would be utilized to display MRI scans in a 3-dimensional (perhaps interactive?) format, enabling physicians to better view injuries, spot tumors, and even “produce simulations of different treatment procedures.”
HoloLens for Interior Design / Retail
In this idea, HoloLens would enable you to do such things as virtually experiment with rearranging furniture or changing the colors of the walls in any room of your house. You could also shop for furniture with HoloLens, utilizing the technology to view how a table or couch would look in your home. The author of the idea also proposes that “flat design companies” (furniture design companies, realtors, etc.) could use HoloLens in their businesses. Imagine a day when you can try on HoloLens at Ikea in order to picture how a sofa will fit/look in your living room; or a day when you can use HoloLens to go virtual apartment hunting. The possibilities are great for all kinds of retailers.
The Portable Workspace
In this idea, HoloLens would be used to transform the working space around you. Need an environment more conducive to getting tasks done? Use HoloLens to augment your surroundings to suit your desires and needs. Or create a virtual workspace wherever you are. (The picture for this idea is great!)
Improving Work Relationships with HoloLens
I found two ideas with similar themes that got me thinking about how augmented reality could help us improve the way we make business acquaintances and interact with our colleagues and associates. The first idea alluded to using a HoloLens app when you go to a business meeting or start at a new company. Looking at a person’s face through the mixed reality headset, a profile would come up providing such information as name, organization, job title, education, etc. The second idea was similar – “Facial recognition with personal information overlays.” Looking at someone in your office and being able to bring up details like that person’s “name, birthday, contact information, spouse and kids’ names” could certainly go a long way towards improving our work relationships. If you go to a lot of conferences (wink), a HoloLens app along these lines might come in handy.
HoloLens in the Oil and Gas Industry
This one was actually submitted by me! My idea is to use HoloLens for equipment maintenance and troubleshooting at dangerous, complicated, and remote oil and gas sites. Information such as machine diagnostics and schematics as well as step-by-step instructions from an outside expert could be superimposed over the very piece of equipment a worker is trying to diagnose and repair.
How would you use Microsoft’s HoloLens in your workplace? Do you have a great idea for how HoloLens could transform your industry? Submit your idea for a HoloLens app that would revolutionize how you work or live. The 3 most viable ideas will be put up for a final vote on Twitter, and the winning idea will be created by the HoloLens development team. Deadline for submissions is January 11, 2016.