When HoloLens first debuted, everyone was amazed. It was the future in a headset, everything that Google Glass failed to be.
Having wowed the public and tech press, Microsoft now has its sights set on stage 2, advertisers. At Cannes Lions 2015, a festival for creatives, it is Redmond’s goal to showcase the potential of its new platform to deliver advertisements to the masses, and in doing so to help monetize what is still a nascent platform.
And if the Wall Street Journal is correct, Microsoft has real confidence in both the appeal of HoloLens, but also in its ability to demo it effectively. It is rumored that the software giant intends to sell ad space for $10 – $12 million a pop, an enormous investment for any advertiser, especially in an unproven platform.
That Microsoft is focusing so strongly on growing commercial support is no great surprise. In the past, its relations with this portion of the business community have been somewhat fraught, and as such this renewed focus is intended to heal old wounds as well as inspire.
How advertisers will react to the HoloLens will certainly be interesting. An anonymous executive was quoted by the WSJ as saying,
“I think HoloLens could be really exciting for them, but not enough people have seen it yet. When you see it, you become an instant convert. But describing it in a PowerPoint deck is not going to give marketers reasons to figure out what to do with it. They need to do more demos”
Exactly how these adverts will manifest is also something that is yet to be defined. Examples given include a ‘virtual car demo’, which will no doubt be of interest to automobile manufacturers. For the platform to truly succeed, content that truly takes advantages of the hardware’s unique capabilities must be implemented; only the future will tell if flying pop-up ads will assail us upon wearing the HoloLens (with a holographic bat mod to fend them off.)
How do you think adverts could best be implemented on HoloLens? Let us know in the comments below.Further reading: Cannes, HoloLens, Microsoft