Back in July, it looked as though the billion-dollar Hololens deal between Microsoft and the US military could burst – now the group has shipped the first headsets. After a test phase, it will become clear whether the government will order more data glasses.
The custom Hololenses are marketed as “Microsoft Integrated Visual Augmentation Systems,” or IVAS for short, for the military. This message is about the delivery of the first units via Bloomberg. The US military received the first batch of high-tech combat goggles from Microsoft a few days ago. At the same time, the military announced that it had received encouraging results from the first field tests and would therefore approve the first 5,000 IVAS.
Vice Secretary of Procurement Douglas Bush had authorized the military to do this. Delivery was delayed pending more rigorous testing due to concerns about the device’s performance. They are now complete and IVAS appears to have succeeded. Bloomberg is now citing the first test results. Based on this, the deployment plan is changed to have time to fix defects. However, the first devices will also be delivered to units that focus on training activities.
Are improvements successful?
The military ordered the first 5,000 IVAS in March 2021, worth $373 million. The order would be the first of potentially 121,000 over a decade but was put on hold last year when the military postponed deployment of the device “to further improve the technology platform”. It is not known when new orders or the end of the deal will be negotiated. Microsoft declined to comment at Bloomberg’s request.
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