A few weeks back, Asus was in talks with Microsoft about building its own Hololens headset and becoming the first company outside of Microsoft to do so. It looks like Asus is going ahead with that plan.

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In an interview with Jerry Shen, CNET confirms that Asus will be making its own Hololens, the most convincing piece of technology (as of right now) that could bring augmented reality to the masses. Or at the very least, the affluent masses–since Hololens will costs developers $3,000 when it ships early next year.

There are very few details about Asus’ own take on AR, but Shen said the unit should be available sometime next year. Asus has also been pretty hands-off when it comes to virtual reality, a rival technology that’s been quickly adopted by the gaming community but also traditional tech companies like HTC and Samsung. Shen says he sees more of a future in AR.

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Seems like there’s a bit of an AR versus VR competition emerging, with VR undeniably having a head start over Microsoft’s AR ambitions (it also has Netflix VR, that’s hard to beat). But most likely, Asus will be the first of several companies to see if Microsoft’s faceputer vision is actually the future or just another ambitious failure.

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[CNET]


The Next Galaxy: Samsung’s flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S7, is rumored to be arriving on February 21. This goes against some previous rumors that suggest the S7 could arrive as early as December, but instead it will follow its familiar release scheduling, unveiling the day before Mobile World Congress opens in Barcelona. [Ricciolo]

Microsoft and Bitcoin?: Microsoft is reportedly looking into how to use crypto-currency tech for businesses. Redmond is teaming up with a startup called ConsenSys and hopes that it will improve security. Microsoft says their application is only “scratching the surface.” With Bitcoin’s price rising and its mysterious creator possibly in the running for a Nobel prize, it seems the oft-flailing technology isn’t nearly dead yet. [Reuters]

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NextVR Goes Big: The company that’s streamed the Democratic presidential debate and the NBA’s season opener just received tons of cash from Comast and Time Warner—$30.5 million to be exact. NextVR joins other VR companies like Jaunt which have received tons of cash to help develop content for the immersive platform. [Wall Street Journal]