Windows Central: ‘Microsoft Has Laid Off Entire Teams Behind Virtual, Mixed Reality, and HoloLens’

Jez Corden, reporting for Windows Central:

For Microsoft to cull the entire team behind MRTK, which was due to release a new version just next month, it paints a picture of a company that perhaps no longer believes in virtual reality. There are many who believe the “metaverse” represents the next big opportunity in human-computer interfacing, but even Facebook, who rebranded its entire company to Meta in the belief of this technology, is scaling back in this area as well — laying off 11,000 staff back in November.

I think it’s worth noting that Facebook rebranded as “Meta” just as much because the “Facebook” brand is so sullied as anything else, but clearly, Mark Zuckerberg hopes to establish their headsets as a major new consumer computing platform.

It’s curious too that Microsoft would seemingly abandon its own years-long efforts in the XR space on the cusp of Apple’s entrance. It brings to mind the original Surface — a $10,000 touchscreen table the company started selling in May 2007, only to eventually cede the entire touchscreen revolution in personal computing to Apple and Android.

Update: This parody narration for Microsoft’s promotional video is the best review of the original Surface. (Via Colin Weir.)

Monday, 23 January 2023