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HoloLens 2 images leak ahead of official announcement at MWC 2019

Images of what looks to be the upcoming next generation HoloLens has leaked just hours before Microsoft is said to be unveiling the device at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. It's been four years since the first HoloLens, and thanks to these leaked images, we now know how far the hardware has come since then.

Where and when to watch Microsoft's MWC HoloLens 2 announcement

The images showcase a smaller HoloLens headset, with more padding in the forehead area. Unlike HoloLens 1, HoloLens 2 doesn't have a second head mount that keeps the device in-place on your head. Thanks to the padded front area, the only adjustable band is the one that wraps around the sides of your head, just like most Windows Mixed Reality headsets available on the market today.

In one of the images, a person is shown to be selecting a button with their finger, suggesting HoloLens 2 will feature more advanced hand-tracking. There's still no confirmation on specifications or price, but we do know that HoloLens 2, just like Surface Hub 2X, will ship with Windows Core OS, but with a UI that's built for holographic computing.

It is also believed that HoloLens 2 will be Microsoft's first Windows on ARM device, sporting a Snapdragon 850 processor which should give it more processing power and better battery life over the first generation HoloLens. Other rumored improvements include a wider field of view, better anti-aliasing on 3D elements projected on the HoloLens, and plenty other minor additions to improve the overall holographic experience.

Everything we know about HoloLens 2

Microsoft is expected to unveil HoloLens 2 officially in less than 24 hours. There, we should hear more about what Microsoft has been working on for the last four years, including when it'll be available to buy, and how much it'll cost. Are you interested in HoloLens 2? Let us know in the comments.

Zac Bowden
Zac Bowden

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

43 Comments
  • Dammit, man. Can't people wait even ONE DAY? Leaks take the fun away from reveals and releases. This culture of overhyping things and leaks is toxic.
  • You don't have to look.
  • yea i have no problems with leaks
  • They are not toxic.. But yeah they take the fun away for sure
  • That's what I mean. It's just one more day, and we get the oficial release, with HD videos and all specs. So all this does is kill the surprise and the joy of the presentation.
  • You think after keeping quiet for three years they couldn't keep quiet for one more day? It's clearly a controlled leak. All it does is show the design and makes people watch the conference today in case they forgot.
  • I don't think so, I don't think they need it. Those who want to know are already waiting for the event. Those who don't know about it will know it today or afterwards when the actual news explode. So if it's on purpose, it's still a crappy business practice that goes against their own release plans. The industry doesn't need this, not really. I think it's a testament to how immature the public is, and the sole idea that companies cater to this culture is awful.
  • "It's clearly a controlled leak"
    Clearly you don't know how this works ;) Right before an announcement a company tends to upload its PR assets to its website to eventually share with the press, and use on its own site when the announcement goes live. Those new product pages - whether its Apple, Google, or Microsoft - don't get coded/uploaded as the event is happening, obviously. Those images and assets are tough to find but WalkingCat has made it his life mission to dig for URL's and hidden directories to find those images. He's done this before and will likely do it again until MS changes protocol on how it handles its own internal image database.
  • We need ppl like this guy, WalkingCat. Can't wait for a Surface Andromeda leak.
  • I'm just happy this is an actual news article and not a "some SD card is discounted today" or "save 10% on a vacuum" article. Seems like at least half of WC's content nowadays is simply ads.
  • Yea I agree. More ads than actually news.
  • It's more than half, I checked over a span of twenty articles.
  • Now I'm definitely looking forward to the announcement now.
  • I am wondering if the second picture is showing the actual FOV. Since the whole v1 backlash they started to show the real FOV in all marketing material. Here they don't specifically mention it. If that is the actual FOV the women is seeing from her POV I am impressed. That would mean they have tripled or quadrupled the viewport size (double FOV both horizontally and vertically). Edit: Nevermind. Comparing with the first picture it is clear that she doesn't even have a line of sight from her pupils through the HoloLens upper area to the top row of the AR screen.
  • Weren’t they supposed to make it thin and more mobile? I am little worried now. I really hoped it would be more(of course thick) regular rayban looking.
  • I don't mind it being similar in size to the previous version, but I hope it has much better interactions for users and a better field of view. That picture of the woman actually pressing a button would be much nicer than simultaneously looking at something and performing an air gesture.
  • You won't see Hololens-level overlaying in something resembling standard glasses anytime soon. Your best bet will be something like LaForge Shima, if they are ever released, and there we're talking HUD more than true AR...
  • It actually looks like it is a little thinner based on the photo but not as much. There is also something on the back of the head that probably house a battery and if it is, likely have longer battery life which the first-gen is highly being criticised other than the limited FoV, which I hope has been improved this time. If it is a battery compartment, hopefully it can be easily swapped. It will take a while before HoloLens become like a sunglasses. Though it is possible, they are still too bulky as sunglasses and probably too expensive or not yet possible to fit the display tech like on current HoloLens. Also the processing power is still high on these devices that it would be a huge challenge to fit it on smaller chassis without causing thermal issues and battery.
  • It is not possible to shrink HoloLens' tech to sunglasses size. Physics prevents that. They could of course find another technology that doesn't have the same limitations as the current HoloLens has.
  • I didn't meant that the current HoloLens, but existing AR glasses that are already looks similar to sunglasses, but they don't use same tech as HoloLens hence it will be bulky if they did and will just introduce comprise like smaller battery, poor thermal dissipation, and changing the display tech which what HoloLens makes it special. Maybe they can make HoloLens like sunglasses, but they have to change some of the tech like the display.
  • I hope the thing in the back of the head is for BCI
  • Also, the lady’s hololens seems to have complete glass front whereas the man’s hololens does not. May be we will see the final design later today only.
  • That's disappointing. Why didn't theyget the Surface team to do the industrial design? Imagine what the hinge team could do with that head strap.
  • What makes you think they didn't do that? Rather I think what's happening is they are going for a different audience than Mr. Cool. They have made it clear they don't think of it as a cool consumer product. They think it succeeds as a brawny industrial tool that enhances productivity of people doing some sort of spatial task. So the compromises they made reflect that; they want it highly functional, but comfortable to use for long periods, etc rather than trying to make it sleek or attractive but less performant on some work dimension. They are not going to be encouraging anyone to wear this outside for a stroll. Think of it as (for some types of workers) your work computer, 2020.
  • I think Surface team could only do much on making it more attractive, and it will still be as bulky as it is since it is a technological limitation for now. I think the design is okay, but somehow not as sleeker looking as the first-gen with full glass front, while this one has exposed sensors which can be more prone on getting dirt around the holes. Though it also looks like they make it a little more compact this time, just slightly. I also noticed something on the back, which could probably house bigger battery and if it is, hopefully is removable so it can be easily hotswap when needed. Looks like they make HoloLens 2 more industrial looking than the sleeker HoloLens 1. It shows that their focus this time is not for early adopter consumers with deep pockets. Likely it is still as expensive as the first-gen.
  • How do you get dirt on a device that is only for indoor use? Price should come down at least to levels of Magic Leap, so around $2000.
  • Well that depends what use case that the company will use it for, if possible they can use it outdoors. But that's not up to us. Just saying that the sensor holes can accumulate dirt, but it can be cleaned for sure, not as easier as the single piece of glass that covers it on first gen which also adds some sleekness to it. Pricing would be pretty similar to Magic Leap. Maybe the pricing would be more competitive this time but it can be still as expensive as the first one if this still packs newer bleeding edge tech. That remains to be seen.
  • Interested yes, but I'm not getting excited until we're talking consumer products at consumer price levels.
  • Uhm, wtf?!? Wasn't the use of ARM CPU meant to make the device slicker and thinner? How the hell did they manage to make it bulkier and uglier than the previous version? Are Microsoft retarded?
  • ARM CPU was a) a necessity because Intel doesn't produce Atom anymore and b) meant to give it longer running time (it is around 3 hours on v1). And really for a device like HoloLens it is not about looks. You are not wearing it outside.
  • And what's the problem if you want to wear it outside?
  • No, but you are ignorant. Also, who uses retard as an insult anymore?
  • Enlighten me on trendy insults, please?
  • It's not though
  • I am hoping that part of the back has a swappable battery or upgradable Cpu - a similar concept as Surface Hub.
  • I would not say that it is smaller. Seems like its about the same size in the front, less at the sides, more at the back. Really wondering how they will do sound with v2, because it looks like it is just a band, nothing where they could hide any speakers.
  • Again, I'll ask the question nobody asks: will the event be live broadcasted? And when (time) will the announcement take place?
  • Today 9 am Pacific time
    At Barcelona, MWC 2019
  • Again, nobody asks the question because they already know the answer: https://www.windowscentral.com/watch-microsofts-mwc-2019-live-stream-rig...
  • Don't get fooled by the hand interaction photo. It's still not a proof but just a mock-up
  • If it looks like that - it's an enterprise product. It won't be under $2K and it will be for businesses and industrial use. Which is sad.
  • They need to make a special edition version in a MJOLNIR helmet.
  • *Master Chief helmet