#Hololens – You can also create #2D apps !!!

Hi !

After my yesterday’s post about HoloLens Dev Center, I start to read other sources and I found some interesting information for Windows Apps Developers. So, there are 2 main types of apps to be developed / used with the HoloLens:

The ultra cool 3D apps

This apps basically relies on Holograms. These are the ones, we’ve already seen on most of demos, and which makes us happy. 3D models in a static view, reacting in realtime to our gestures, movements, etc.


The no so cool, but still interesting 2D apps

These are a nice feature also. This apps appears as a virtual slate in the holographic world, and as a user, we can adjust the size and move the slate in our virtual world. However, these are apps displayed in a slate, which means these are Universal Windows apps which can run everywhere.

These are Windows 10 apps designed for tablets, laptops, smartphones, IoT devices or XBox, and now they can run also in HoloLens.

So, the first step to make our app “HoloLens compatible”, is to target to Windows Universal Platform. In the references section you can find 2 good resources to do this: Guide and Migration.

Once your app is a UWP app, you can run the app in the emulator (which is so cool!). Select “HoloLens Emulator” in the target device and you’ll see how ugly your app can be or you can probably not see anything at all.


The Windows 10 version of the HoloLens, is still in development, so there are some key topics to consider at this point. In example, as the main documentation describes, the following scenarios are not supported:

  • Querying for File System paths not supported on startup
  • Using legacy authentication methods outside of Web Authentication Broker or Web Account Manager
  • Making deep device hardware queries on startup (i.e. games)
  • Using Calendar, People, Contact APIs on startup
  • Using large 3rd party libraries or services that may not be fully vetted on HoloLens

My guess, is a simple Hello World will work. Anything else, will require some nice debugging nights.

In other posts I’ll probably get into other details like Resolution and Scale Factor. Now is time to prepare everything for my first day at school for my kids, and also some other interesting new stuff for my family and myself in Toronto !!!

Happy coding ! Open-mouthed smile

Greetings @ Toronto

-El Bruno


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