If you want to test out some cutting-edge VR tech on the cheap, maybe join the US Army. In a recent statement, the US Army confirmed that Microsoft has signed a contract with the army to make 120,000 HoloLens VR augmented reality headsets over the next 10 years. The deal is believed to be worth up to $21.88 billion.
“The IVAS headset, based on HoloLens and augmented by Microsoft Azure cloud services, delivers a platform that will keep soldiers safer and make them more effective,” Alex Kipman, one of the original architects of the HoloLens said in a blogpost. “The program delivers enhanced situational awareness, enabling information sharing and decision-making in a variety of scenarios.”
All I’m hoping is that they hook up those HoloLenses with a few games like Job Simulator or Bone Works to really test those recruits skills.
Microsoft engineers, designers and programmers, however, have voiced serious concern about their creation being used to train soldiers. In an open letter to Microsoft penned by several higher-ups they said, “We did not sign up to develop weapons, and we demand a say in how our work is used.”
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella later rebuked concerns saying “we made a principled decision that we’re not going to withhold technology from institutions that we have elected in democracies to protect the freedoms we enjoy.”