HoloLens Can Cause Permanent Neurological Deficits, According to CEO of Magic Leap

The Hololens has barely been teased and hasn’t even been released, but that is not stopping other companies from talking negatively about the device. The CEO of Magic Leap, a startup working on hyper-realistic augmented reality, recently expressed concerns about the HoloLens during a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything).


According to Rony Abovitz, the CEO of Magic Leap, the input methods that the HoloLens uses are incorrect, and can cause permanent neurological effects.

There are a class of devices (see-through and non-see-through) called stereoscopic 3D. We at Magic Leap believe these inputs into the eye-brain system are incorrect – and can cause a spectrum of temporary and/or permanent neurologic deficits.

At Magic Leap we created a digital light-field signal technology that respects the biology of the human eye-brain system in a profound and safe way – and the experience is awesome – and unlike anything you have ever seen before (except for the real world) 🙂

Interestingly enough, Rony Abovitz has provided no evidence to back up his claim, and many have called him out for that. With that being said, later in the AMA thread, he did try to clarify his stance a little and talk more about the possible medical effects of devices like the Hololens.

Our philosophy as a company (and my personal view) is to “leave no footprints” in the brain. The brain is very neuroplastic – and there is no doubt that near-eye stereoscopic 3d systems have the potential to cause neurologic change.

There is a history (for optics geeks) of issues that near-eye stereoscopic 3d may cause – but this has always been very limited use and small populations (like the military). We have done an internal hazard and risk analysis (like the kind I did from my med-tech/surgical robotics days) on the spectrum of hazards that may occur to a wide array of users. Frequency of use, duration of use, and the neuroplasticity of the user are all key factors – but because we are all people – we may all be impacted.

I personally experienced a number of these stereoscopic-3d issues – and would not wear these devices -especially knowing that digital light-field systems are on the way and safe.

Without evidence and sources, his statements are unsubstantiated attacks on a competitor. We all know this. Overall, it’s weird to see a CEO of a startup, which has received millions in funding from Google, make such claims without evidence. The CEO of Magic Leap definitely walked away from Reddit with a little smudge on his reputation.

What are your thoughts? Do you think the HoloLens and devices like it can cause neurological change? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section down below!

Source: Cnet