Developing holographic apps for HoloLens uses the Universal Windows Platform. All holographic apps are Universal Windows apps, and all Universal Windows apps can be made to run on Microsoft HoloLens. With Windows 10 and with middleware tools like Unity, you can start building holographic experiences. Unity today announced the release of Unity 5.5 which comes with support for Windows Holographic.
They have improved the workflow by bringing Holographic Emulation right into the Unity Editor. Developers creating applications for HoloLens will be able to prototype, debug, and iterate on design directly from the Unity Editor without needing to build and deploy to an actual HoloLens device.
A Unity project for Microsoft Holographic platform isn’t very different to a Unity project for other platforms, with a few notable exceptions:
- Ensure that the Camera you intend to track the HoloLens device’s position is tagged as Main Camera in the Inspector window. The default Camera in the Scene should already be tagged appropriately.
- Set the Main Camera’s Background property to Solid Color rather than the defaulted Skybox. Set the background color to (0, 0, 0, 0).
- Use the Fastest Quality Settings in Edit > Project Settings > Quality. This maximizes performance and reduces power consumption. In particular, soft shadows and shadow cascades are too expensive to use on the HoloLens, and should be avoided.
- Enable the appropriate publishing flags based on which subsystems your application uses.