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Microsoft partners with Kawasaki for industrial metaverse


HoloLens from Microsoft

Andrew Evers | CNBC

Although you may not feel ready to leap into the metaverse just for entertainment, it might be happening sooner than expected.

Microsoft announced Tuesday that Kawasaki is a new customer for the tech giant’s so-called “industrial metaverse” ⁠— a fancy way of saying factory floor workers will wear a HoloLens headset to help with production, repairs and managing supply chains. They will also use them to create robots.

HoloLens is an augmented reality headset that was launched in 2016 and allows users to see digital images instead of the real world. Microsoft’s industrial universe consists of combining many Microsoft technologies such as cloud computing in order to make it easier for managers and factory workers to create stuff more quickly.

Microsoft calls this a “digital twin” or “industrial metaverse”. It speeds up repairs and new manufacturing processes.

Instead of having to call a technician to repair a part in the factory, they could use the HoloLens instead to talk with workers on the site, and guide them through the process using visual cues from Augmented Reality. It also lets managers use the digital twin to spin up new production if needed ⁠— something Microsoft pitches as a way to combat supply chain problems.

This technology doesn’t just belong to Kawasaki. Heinz had earlier announced that it would use Microsoft’s industrial metadata in its ketchup factories. BoeingIt is also used in manufacturing.

Although it sounds like a joke, customers at Microsoft have long been asking about it as the buzz grows around the metaverse idea. CNBC spoke with Jessica Hawk last week, Microsoft’s corporate vice President of Mixed Reality. Hawk said the industrial metaverse was a preview of the technology that can be used today to create a fully immersive future.

Hawk explained, “That is why I think that you are seeing a lot energy in this space.” “These problems are very real for these businesses… so any technology that helps to unblock supply chains is extremely impactful.”

The booming business of Microsoft speaks volumes about the state of things in the metaverse. We’ve heard a lot about a future in sci-fi where everybody can work, play, and socialize in virtual reality. However, companies that are developing this technology today have their sights set on the enterprise rather than the consumer.

You can take, MetaThe mixed reality headset is expected to cost $299 more and will appeal to those who prefer to work remotely while still feeling “present”. One of Meta’s first products in metaverse was actually an app that allows you to connect with your Metaverse account. hold meetings in virtual reality.

Microsoft is different because it has an advantage. It’s selling mixed reality technology to companies and giving tools to developers to create their own metaverse experiences.

Hawk explained, “We truly see differentiation in our approach here that recognizes the people are going to enjoy the metaverse across many devices and platforms.”

This means that metaverse products can also be used on 2D screens, such as the new Microsoft Teams chat features last year which allow people to appear as virtual avatars. These features will be available on headsets as well as other platforms.

Hawk stated, “We are just excited that it’s an moment in time which unlocks so much innovation.” There are some things that we know today. Many, many other things are now well-known. This is a thrilling time in our lives.”