Microsoft is promising to make some noticeable changes to its HoloLens 2 augmented reality headset in the coming months. In a recent blog post, the company has spoken about the display on the device, one of the most controversial aspects of HoloLens.
Praise was almost universal for HoloLens 2 when it became available last year. However, one bone of contention was the display on the headset, with issues frequently reported.
Microsoft now says they are working on improving the display. This will not be a hardware tweak but will add software improvements to boost image quality. It is worth noting HoloLens 2 already has a solidly better screen experience than the 1ST gen device.
When it launched a year ago, Microsoft was eager to discuss a major increase in field of view (FoV) and 3x the brightness. Still, more improvements are necessary and Microsoft is developing a new reading mode, automatic eye position tool, and calibration improvements.
Out of the bunch, the automatic eye position feature is the most interesting. Microsoft says the feature will allow HoloLens 2 to carry out eye calibration in the background. Essentially, users will no longer need to manually help the device calibrate their eyes for active color correction to function.
Other Upcoming Changes
- “Color Calibration Improvements. This update focuses on color values of darker colors (for example, dark gray). Right now, dimmer colors pick up a red tone. This issue also happens as the entire display is dimmed—the entire display picks up red colors. This issue is a result of too much activity in the red color channel for these darker colors. We’ve characterized the laser illumination curves at these dimmer colors and are working to offer a user calibration procedure. The result will be more color accuracy across the brightness spectrum. It will not change the appearance of white backgrounds at full brightness. We continue to advise use of dark mode design patterns in apps.
- Reading Mode. It is possible for app developers to tradeoff the display field-of-view to achieve higher angular resolution. App developers can override the projection matrix so that content is rendered at the display’s drawing resolution. This feature results in 30% reduction in field-of-view and a corresponding increase in angular resolution. Work is underway to introduce this capability to the Mixed Reality Toolkit. When available, reading mode will work on any HoloLens 2 OS—it is not dependent on an OS update.”