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Microsoft has announced that it’s expanding its HoloLens Agency Readiness Partner program to Europe, almost a year after it first opened to creative agencies in North America.

Though HoloLens is capable of some truly awesome and mind-blowing things, a major hurdle for any company dedicating resources to the fledgling augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) industries is getting companies to harness the capabilities and understand how they can be used.

Companies with in-house expertise are free to build apps for HoloLens through Microsoft’s software development kit (SDK), but often companies will have to rely on outside help to bring “mixed reality” apps to market — and this is why Microsoft is looking to certify agencies that are ready and able.

Now Microsoft has rubber-stamped six agencies from Europe, each of which has gone through “extensive, hands-on training” with the Microsoft HoloLens team, according to Lorraine Bardeen, general manager for Microsoft’s HoloLens and Windows Experiences team. These agencies are: Black Marble, Rewind, and Fundamental VR (U.K.); Holoforge and Immersion (France); and Zuhlke (Germany). This takes the total number of HoloLens Agency Readiness Partners to 16, following the 10 that were previously announced in the U.S. and Canada.

“Working with one of our hand-selected HoloLens Agency Readiness Partners is one of the quickest ways to get started with creating mixed reality applications that can transform working with 3D data, bringing new products and information to life and creating new opportunities for business growth.”

Microsoft’s mixed reality headset first started shipping to developers in the U.S. last March, and over the past few months the company has been opening things up to developers and clients in more markets, including Europe and Australasia. So it’s not entirely surprising to see the agency partner program also arriving in additional markets.


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