The future of 3D holograms comes into focus

Smartphone-based augmented reality (AR) and the AR headset explosion will bring 3D holograms into our lives everywhere. Meanwhile, though, the real AR hologram revolution is being ignored.

A hologram is a 3D virtual object that isn’t actually “there,” but looks as if it were, either floating in the air or standing on a nearby desk or table.

The “holo” in Microsoft’s HoloLens headset is a reference to holograms. And when we think of these future AR holograms, we think of headsets, goggles such as HoloLens or smartphones running applications created with Apple’s ARKit or Google’s ARCore.

The technology is increasingly becoming ubiquitous, and companies are racing to win market domination. A competitor to the HoloLens, the “Lightware” headset from secretive Magic Leap, has been in the news lately, after six years of development at a cost of $2 billion, for two reasons.

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