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Taking to the Skies—and Beyond—with Mixed Reality

By Adrian Alleyne on 21/08/2017

Filed under Media & Cable


Mixed reality is providing the opportunity to take people and organisations on incredible journeys;  from adrenaline-filled aerial acrobatics to distant plants, HoloLens (the first self-contained, holographic computer) is helping our customers take to new heights without ever leaving the ground.

Red Bull Air Race

Imagine the rush of racing a single propeller aeroplane at 255 km per hour through a complex obstacle course only 15 metres off the ground. It’s exactly the kind of thrill rush that the Red Bull brand has have become famous for. Of course, not every fan can experience the thrill first hand: not nearly enough room in the cockpit, for one, and second, because of the risk, however, planes were only allowed to fly one at a time rather than going head-to-head. This took away a bit of the real-time competitive feel for fans.

Fortunately for fans, creative agency, REWIND has been able to solve both problems with the help of Microsoft HoloLens. To make Air Race as accessible as possible, REWIND conceived the idea of ‘Flight Deck’, an immersive experience that would substantially enhance the live-viewing of the sport. Users can choose either fastest lap of the day or previous laps from preferred pilots to be overlaid over a miniature race track. The experience also visually illustrates the rules of the sport in an immersive manner. Not only does it allow fans a pilot’s point of view, Flight Deck also lets users have a view of pilots’ paths overlaid on a miniature race track to add to the competitive feel of the event.

More on REWIND’s Flight Deck

The Soul of a Volvo

While the Red Bull brand is synonymous with adrenaline-filled thrill rides, Volvo has built its brand around innovation in safety and design. HoloLens is helping designers and engineers take their creativity to new heights – helping them “see the soul of the car”, as Volvo’s Chief Futurologist, Aric Cromi describes.

As part of a partnership with Microsoft, Volvo Cars has been using HoloLens for more than just seeing the souls of the cars it builds. It’s really helping Volvo push the envelope of innovation when it comes to providing better and safer cars for customers. It changes the way customers choose options and make decisions while shopping for a new Volvo. They can consider features and colours at full-scale and in 3D as if on the showroom floor, rather than simply viewing a flat image on a screen. It helps engineers better visualize how their cars perceive and react to their environments.

Watch Volvo’s HoloLens story

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Life on Mars with HoloLens?

HoloLens isn’t just working with vehicle on land and in the air, The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the US has been using HoloLens explore space in a number of ways. For instance, NASA has sent a HoloLens device to the International Space Station to allow ground control to interact with and assist astronauts and serve as remote experts. They’re also using the HoloLens to take real data from the Mars Rover to give scientists and engineers on earth a 3D window into the red planet. OnSight, HoloLens software developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, gives rover scientists the ability to walk around, explore and really experience Mars in a way they couldn’t before.

Watch Wired’s Brent Rose walk on Mars

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Where will mixed reality take you? Find out more about how HoloLens can take your creativity and your business to new heights.

Find out more about HoloLens

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