Microsoft revealed last November, in 2018, that they would be providing 100,000 augmented reality HoloLens headsets to the US army, the role of technology on the battlefield being the topic of some challenging questions. Todd Haselton from CNBC garnered some surprising insight while using the HoloLens in simulated combat and speaking to the soldiers who have been beta testing early prototypes.
Microsoft HoloLens 2 that was announced at Barcelona last February can’t be compared to the HoloLens the military is using in the moment of this writing. This device would come as help for professionals such as engineers and architects that would use them for better efficiency in their projects. IVAS, or the “Integrated Visual Augmentation System,” is a HoloLens 2 that was heavily modified for the military to use them. A wide range of sensors and features that the HoloLens 2 does not have is incorporated with the specific goal of “increasing lethality.”
Microsoft HoloLens 2 AR headsets designed for the US army are improved versions of the standard ones
The primary function that IVAS has is to manage the coordination and communication between soldiers during combat, this being compared to what happens in a videogame. One of the features CNBC was able to experience was a real-time ‘mini-map’ for lack of a better world. It is projected onto the floor and displays the location and direction of teammates. To highlight the real-time location of enemies or targets or to map out escape routes, this can also be used.
When a soldier is unable to check the map, a compass ring is displayed at the top of a soldier’s vision to provide data and give information like the bearing of the soldiers, including the distance and direction to their teammates. In these situations, IVAS can be very potent, but it does not mean it does not have disadvantages.
Daniel Kiss is the senior editor for News Lair. Daniel was working as a writer since he finished high-school, first for local papers then he started online, nowadays he likes to write about the latest games and tech innovations.