Microsoft, Facebook and Wearables: The Race of Giants

Today’s world of wearable technology is led by two types of companies. On one side remain the startups and “regular” firms, which keep on coming up with amazing devices for personal or industrial use. The other side is now hostage of long-time giants such as Facebook and Microsoft, fighting for an access to the acme of wearable technology and control over the global market. While Microsoft lately showed an image of a slow-mover, responding to trends rather than setting them, it can surely benefit from solid experience in the high-tech sector. Bill Gate’s titan shares the ring with Facebook, one of the most agile and resourceful companies of the 21st century, led by the brilliant Zuckerberg. So who will make it first to the finish line?

Microsoft recently acquired Osterhout Design Group (ODG) for $150 million. Even though we can regularly witness such transactions among these “superfirms”, there must be something special that Microsoft was the first to see in ODG.TechCrunch identified that critical IP Assets patents had been undergoing negotiations between the two firms since last year, and that the deal had finally been closed. It is believed they aim at producing see-through devices with workplace applications, which would also be usable in the consumer space.

On the other hand, Facebook spent $2 billions on acquiring Oculus Rift, the famous augmented-reality heads up display used in 3D gaming. The two recent partners believe in augmented reality as the next step toward a more connected future, and got everyone very curious about their soon-to-come revolution of gamers' virtual experience.

While Zuckerberg stated that “Microsoft hasn’t even gotten to the point where they have anything to demo.”, ODG’s CEO wonders why Facebook spent so much on a technology that “[is] not a standalone, complete computing solutions.” Both partnerships seem to be questioning each other’s motives for such alliances, and whether they will turn out to be successful. Needless to add that we do too! The tech-savvy community is surely excited about witnessing a duel of giants, competing in a quest for what might be the groundbreaking invention of the century.