The first image of Microsoft’s HoloLens prototype has leaked over at the Oculus Rift subreddit, giving us a glimpse at the prototype shown off to press after the headset’s announcement in January.
While Microsoft has revealed what the HoloLens will look like when it launches, this is the first time we’ve been able to see what the holographic technology looks like in its current working form. There’s a complicated set of head straps connected to a couple of lenses and (barely visible) a large CPU that hangs around the wearer’s neck.
Business Insider editor Matt Rosoff, who was able to try on the HoloLens prototype at Microsoft’s event, has confirmed the photo is of the same device he tried on. Microsoft had strict rules in place meant to prevent photography — reporters weren’t allowed to bring any electronic devices into the demo area — but it looks like somebody got a photo out.
Unlike virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift, Microsoft’s HoloLens uses something called augmented reality to insert interactive, hologram-like images into your daily life.
Note that this is just an early prototype. The actual final version will look more like glasses or goggles, as shown by these three Microsoft execs at the event. The challenge will be packing all the stuff currently in that CPU into a tiny set of goggles.