A U.S. Pentagon oversight body now expects the U.S. Army to “waste” up to $22 billion on its HoloLens project, called the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS). The revelation comes just one month after an internal Microsoft memo revealed that it expected negative feedback on HoloLens from the U.S. Army.
“Procuring IVAS without attaining user acceptance could result in wasting up to $21.88 billion in taxpayer funds to field a system that soldiers may not want to use or use as intended,” the oversight body writes in its audit report. “Program officials stated that, if soldiers do not love IVAS and do not find it greatly enhances accomplishing the mission, then soldiers will not use it. Army officials should establish policy requiring program officials to define suitable user acceptance levels.”
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The reason why this money will be wasted is intriguingly redacted, as is much of the report.
But as The Register points out, the Army hasn’t yet determined how or even if servicemembers will use HoloLens in the field. Feedback from soldier surveys showed “both positive and negative user acceptance.”
“Our focus continues to be on developing IVAS to be a transformational platform that will deliver enhanced soldier safety and effectiveness,” a Microsoft statement notes.