Two whole years after the first experimental demo of an early pre-production HoloLens prototype, and almost 12 months on the heels of a developer-focused launch, there’s still nothing quite like Microsoft’s mixed reality beast around to put pressure on the Redmond-based tech giant.

While anyone can sample and buy the immersive smartglasses in more than half a dozen markets worldwide, an actual consumer version may never see daylight. Nor will a “smaller and more affordable” second-generation device, according to “several sources who have direct knowledge of the company’s plans.”

These very trustworthy inside connections of the folks over at Thurrott.com claim Microsoft wants to accelerate the making of an AR-powered HoloLens v3 by entirely skipping what was supposed to be version 2.

Unfortunately, that probably means no new HoloLens headset until sometime in 2019, which wouldn’t normally feel like a pragmatic business decision, but in this case, makes perfect sense… as long as Apple doesn’t revolutionize the currently fledgling industry with the help of Carl Zeiss.

As for HTC, Oculus, Samsung, Google and everyone else, they all look committed to VR technology, allowing Microsoft to work hard and long behind the scenes and hopefully achieve its unique vision for how mixed reality can transform and transcend traditional computing experiences. Still, 2019 is an eternity away, and companies like Magic Leap could always sidetrack Redmond’s wait-and-innovate gamble.

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