Shots fired! Business Insider reported on problems and changes to Microsoft’s HoloLens program yesterday, saying plans for a HoloLens 3 were scrapped last year, describes “confusion and strategic uncertainty” in the HoloLens program and revealed a partnership between Microsoft and Samsung on a new mixed reality device with Samsung providing the hardware. Then today, as we noted in our opinion piece on Microsoft and the Metaverse, HoloLens director Alex Kipman took to Twitter to offer a rejoinder:
don’t believe what you read on the internet. #HoloLens going great and if you search the internet they also said we canceled #HoloLens2… which I checked last time we successfully shipped[)-)[)-)[)-)[)-)
—Alex Kipman (@akipman) February 3, 2022
But instead of backing down, Business Insider doubled down in a new report, stating that “Microsoft has ‘unequivocally’ canceled HoloLens 3.” (Paywall). According to Business Insider:
Kipman’s characterization of the situation was deemed “complete bullshit” by the source with direct knowledge of the product’s roadmap.
“Put plain words, Calypso has been cancelled,” the person said. “Everyone who worked on it got split into other programs or left the company. Microsoft could take the HoloLens 2 and put lipstick on a pig for another build,” but it’s not Calypso .
The source described “Calypso” as a code name for the discontinued HoloLens 3 project, which was the “only planned future version of the mixed reality headset designed to function as a ‘fully self-contained computer.’
In the new report, Business Insider reveals more about the Samsung/Microsoft project, dubbed “Project Bondi,” which is “essentially designed as a set of displays in a headset with a Samsung phone in your pocket functioning as a computer.” similar to how an Apple version of a mixed reality headset is supposed to work.
Of course, both parties could be “right” in this little kerfuffle, with something other than Project Calypso, perhaps even the Samsung/Microsoft Project Bondi project, which has become known as “HoloLens 3”. And while Microsoft’s military version of the HoloLens is overdue, it’s still an ongoing project, though perhaps no one but Alex Kipman could say it “works.” very good”.
As we noted in our article this morning, Microsoft’s interest in the Metaverse may or may not include “HoloLens”, or an in-house mixed reality device.