Microsoft's Leila Martine at TechXLR8 2019

Building blocks

While the progress that the company has made miniaturizing their display solutions has been outstanding, a lot of the building blocks for augmented reality are in development by other companies and universities.

GPS Navigation systems are now cheap and portable -- Magellan offers GPS units as small as a cell phone. So folks can already carry personal location devices for a couple hundred bucks.

Now that we can figure out where you are, we need software that provides information about what's around you. Oracle Corporation has created Oracle Spatial which is integrated into their flagship database product, Oracle 10g. Software designed using 10g can provide personalized 'Location Based Services'. These types of services may be especially appealing to large, distributed enterprises.

So if your personal mobile computing devices know where you are, know what's around you, and can communicate with everyday devices, we will be able to bring automation to everything from buying a can of soda from a vending machine, to warming up the coffee pot and turning the lights and heat on as you approach your home. Out in the world, context aware personalized software will provide information about your environment and relate it back to your personal schedule and 'action items'. Walk by a restaurant and see how long the wait is to get seated before you even go inside.

On a large scale, internet information will be moved from 'web pages' to an 'information overlay' onto the regular outside world which will be interacted with by millions of regular people. The internet is moving from workstations and laptops to cell phones, watches and truly personalized wearable computers that harness the massive power of location based services and device networking.

All of these technologies will need a display to interact with the millions of end users.

Out in the world, only Microvision's scanned beam display can provide high-brightness, see-through digital information overlays that are visible in any type of ambient light.

So it's not just Microvision versus the world. There are many large corporations with vested interests in augmented reality and location based internet services. The building blocks for a persistent, context aware, information environment are being put in place, day after day.