The Microsoft HoloLens mixed reality headset has been in the hands of enterprise customers since last year, and for this reason the software titan has focused most of its efforts on workplace scenarios.
Explorer what it calls uses cases for Firstline Workers and Information Workers.
But apparently, the technology giant is also thinking of uses for consumers and end users. One of these is a new patent that was published in February this year, and shows the company wants to create a 3D mapping solution — one that could share rendering data with other alternate reality device.
The patent was filed in April 2016, and mentions a global 3D model that would allow users of AR devices to explore and augment a virtual version of the real world remotely.
“An augmented reality (AR) system receives a plurality of local 3D models of a part of a real-world environment, each having been generated by a different AR device when located in the real-world environment. The local 3D models are combined to generate a global 3D model, at least part of which is transmitted to a device remote from the real-world environment.
The global 3D model represents a greater portion of the real-environment than any of the local 3D models individually. The AR system receives rendering data from the remote device, and transmits it to an AR device when the AR device is located in the real-world environment. Alternatively, the rendering data may be transmitted from the remote device to the AR device via a network directly. The rendering data is for use in rendering a virtual object at the AR device in the real-world environment.”
According to the patent description, AR devices will have the option of storing 3D mapping data in the cloud, or transmit it directly to other alternate reality devices located in the real-world environment.
It will probably be a while before such a project becomes feasible, but it does show how much time and work is invested in making something like this a reality. We are weeks away from 2018, and Redmond has been working on this for a couple of years already.