Get started with Mixed Reality

Virtual hummingbird with human hand

The Mixed Reality ecosystem is an emerging landscape of physical and digital interactions, limited only by your imagination. Whether you're an experienced developer or a new convert, we recommend beginning your Mixed Reality journey with the resources we've laid out below. There's a lot of new ground to cover, so let's get started!

Understand the basics

If you're new to mixed reality, it's important you start from the bottom and work your way up through its core concepts, experiences, and capabilities. You have two options here: we have a focused module on Microsoft Learn that will get you up to speed in no time, or you can explore the an a-la-carte journey we've set up below. Both of these paths will help you set a firm foundation for designing and developing your own ideas in Mixed Reality.

What is mixed reality?

What can you do with mixed reality?

Before you dive into application design or development, you need to understand what we mean by Mixed Reality. This section is designed to get you acquainted with the Mixed Reality spectrum, including environmental input, perceptual changes, design challenges, and devices.

Concept Outcome
Mixed reality is a spectrum Mixed reality blends the physical with the digital, the next evolution in human, computer, and environment interactions
What is a hologram? HoloLens lets you create holograms, which are objects made of light and sound that appear in the world around you like real objects. Holograms respond to your gaze, gestures and voice commands, and can interact with real-world surfaces around you
Mixed Reality learning overview Try out our curated Mixed Reality module through Microsoft Learn
Expand your design process Expand your design mindset with spatial thinking, bodystorming, and acting when creating your immersive experiences

See how industry partners are using mixed reality

Mercedes automotive HoloLens

Mercedes-Benz is transforming the service workforce with HoloLens 2 and Dynamics 365 Remote Assist

Mercedes-Benz USA is using HoloLens 2 and Dynamics 365 Remote Assist to improve service technician efficiency, reduce time to problem solution, and reduce the cost and environmental impact of service-related travel.

BHP energy dynamics 365 HoloLens

BHP increases the pace of innovation despite lockdown with mixed reality and IoT

Despite COVID-19's impact and restrictions, BHP is delivering support and training to field workers from thousands of miles away with HoloLens 2 and Dynamics 365 Remote Assist.

MediView HoloLens story

Healthcare startup cuts time to market by up to 70%, despite pandemic

Healthcare startup Mediview has developed a remarkable product that uses 3D holograms projected either directly on top of the patient’s anatomy or hovering above it to help surgeons see the patients internal anatomy and guide them through procedures.


View complex construction projects with Bentley's digital construction software

Synchro is digital construction software that enables viewing complex construction projects in mixed reality. Their 4D digital construction platform combines traditional Gantt chart CPM scheduling with integrated 4D visualization capabilities in real time.

PTC's Vuforia Studio

PTC's Vuforia Studio authoring solution promotes workforce productivity and safety

Vuforia Studio's efficient mixed reality authoring solution promotes workforce productivity and safety by delivering information when and where workers need it most: in the real-world context of their daily work environment.


Philips is piloting HoloLens in the domain of image-guided invasive procedures

Philips is piloting HoloLens in the domain of image-guided invasive procedures, during which physicians rely on live X-ray, ultrasound, and other sources of information to "see" inside the patient and guide their actions.

Explore HoloLens and Mixed Reality services

HoloLens exploded view

If you're curious to see how the different Mixed Reality hardware and services work, check out the links below. These links will navigate you to different parts of the Microsoft documentation. We recommend bookmarking and returning here to continue on your design and development journey.

Concept Outcome
HoloLens hardware HoloLens 2 offers the most comfortable and immersive mixed reality experience available, with industry-leading solutions that deliver value in minutes—all enhanced by the reliability, security, and scalability of cloud and AI services from Microsoft
Dynamics 365 Explore a range of products that can empower employees and optimize operations with Dynamics 365, including Remote Assist, [Layout, and Guides. Meaningful insight comes from getting hands-on with real work, real devices, and real users
Azure Cloud Services Build compelling immersive experiences on different platforms with spatial awareness, spatial anchors, and complex 3D model rendering
Microsoft Mesh Mesh lets people connect with presence, share across space, and collaborate with one another, from anywhere in the world, through Mesh-enabled mixed reality experiences. With Mesh, you can enhance virtual meetings, conduct virtual design sessions, help others remotely, and host virtual meet-ups

What would you like to do next?

Start designing
Start designing
Learn the basic concepts you need to begin designing and prototyping.

Start developing
Start developing
Choose a development path based on your skill level, work style, or platform interest.

Come to an event
Come to an event
See the hardware and get a hands-on tutorial to make your first HoloLens 2 application.


All mixed reality development materials are provided on this site for your reference only. Your application, its usage, and its effect on end users is your sole responsibility as the application developer, including ensuring that your app does not cause discomfort, injury, or any other harm to the end user, and including appropriate warnings and disclaimers. You need to at all times take the appropriate steps in the development and publishing of your application to ensure that your application is safe, and that you meet all obligations in your App Developer Agreement with Microsoft.