Microsoft is opening its first Mixed Reality capture studios in San Francisco and London, allowing developers and creators to create holograms from real life objects. Microsoft has been using its own studio at its Redmond headquarters to capture Buzz Aldrin, Reggie Watts, Max Frost, and Cirque Du Soleil performances and bring them into virtual reality and augmented reality holograms.
The new studios in San Francisco, London, and Redmond will allow third parties to create holograms that can be used on regular 2D screens, a HoloLens device, or even Microsoft’s new Windows Mixed Reality (VR) headsets. Microsoft will be licensing these studios, and it’s likely to be an expensive process to capture items as holograms.
Microsoft is pitching these studios more to producers, musicians, athletes, and dancers. The software giant is also expanding its Mixed Reality Academy program to San Francisco, with a range of workshops designed to teach the basics of developing apps and experiences for VR and HoloLens headsets.
Microsoft’s new studios come just as the augmented reality wars between Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Facebook begin. Tech companies are trying to bring some type of AR experience mainstream, and a tight integration of hardware and software will be key to convince consumers that mixed reality computing is the next major shift beyond PCs, laptops, and smartphones.