Microsoft is continuing to intensify its business push with its HoloLens augmented reality headset with new features delivered as part of the Windows 10 April 2018 Update, plus new apps and partnerships.
On May 22, Microsoft made available as a "limited-time free preview" two new HoloLens business apps which officials showed off during the company's recent Build 2018 developer conference. Those apps -- Remote Assist for hands-free video calling, image sharing and annotating, and Microsoft Layout for creating 3D space designs -- are both available from the Microsoft Store.
The Windows 10 April 2018 Update allows IT admins to more easily provision, secure, manage and update HoloLens devices with better mobile device management offerings including Microsoft Intune, IBM MaaS360, MobileIron and SOTI. And the new Research Mode feature allows developers to access certain HoloLens sensors when building academic and industrial apps in computer vision and robotics.
Microsoft's blog post highlights some of its latest HoloLens partners, most of which are working on business applications for the device. Construction and engineering, remote maintenance and repair, IoT integration and factory automation applications are all prominently featured on the list.
Microsoft increasingly seems to be refocusing its HoloLens and Windows mixed-reality work on business applications, which makes sense given the company's emerging emphasis on Windows 10 as more of a productivity platform, rather than as a consumer-centic one aimed at "creators."