Microsoft HoloLens can bring a Caterpillar loader from a flat catalog to a full size 3D model

During its Build 2016 day 2 keynote address, Microsoft showed off another use of its HoloLens augmented reality headset. It was used to help make a product catalog from Caterpillar come to life.

Caterpillar loader

The demo began with the flat catalog page viewed from a camera on a Surface tablet. The page showed a large Caterpillar front loader, but as viewed through the app on the Surface, the page turned into a 3D model of the front loader. Then a person came on stage with a HoloLens headset, and saw the same 3D model that was shown on the Surface.

Then, with a flick of the finger, the HoloLens user brought the 3D front loader out of the page and put into onto the Build keynote stage in a full-sized rendering, complete with sound effects and animation. Users can walk around the entire model and even change aspects of it, such as switching the shovel for a forklift. This kind of app will likely help companies sell large items like Caterpillar's products without having to see them in a physical showroom.

John Callaham