United States Army announced on 31 March awarding a contract to Microsoft to work on the production phase of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) programme. The augmented-reality devices will be delivered to the U.S. Army over the next decade, based on existing HoloLens.
Microsoft said on Wednesday in a blog post that "the IVAS headset, based on HoloLens and augmented by Microsoft Azure cloud services, delivers a platform that will keep Soldiers safer and make them more effective. The program delivers enhanced situational awareness, enabling information sharing and decision-making in a variety of scenarios."
Work on the prototype of this product has been ongoing for two years. In 2018, Microsoft won a two-year $480 million contract to supply the American Army with augmented reality tech. Over these two years the tech leader together with the U.S. Army managed to develop Soldier Centered Design that accelerates prototyping for a product to provide Soldiers with the tools and capabilities necessary to achieve their mission.
The deal is worth up to $21.9 billion, expanding the technology company’s role as a major government supplier. Over a 10-year period, more than 120,000 units of the IVAS headset, which will run on Microsoft software, will be delivered and supported by Microsoft’s Azure cloud-computing service.
"We appreciate the partnership with the U.S. Army, and are thankful for their continued trust in transitioning IVAS from rapid prototyping to rapid fielding. We look forward to building on this successful partnership with the men and women of the U.S. Army Close Combat Force." added Microsoft in its statement.