American soldiers would soon be able to engage in combat training using specialized HoloLens AR headsets made by Microsoft now that the Redmond giant won a $480 million military contract with the U.S. government. 

Since Microsoft won the bidding, it will be providing the military with prototypes of augmented reality systems for two years. The documentation describing the bidding process also indicated that the deal may result to follow-on orders of over 100,000 headsets. 

Microsoft is primarily tasked to come up with AR tech that would give soldiers the ability to engage in “25 bloodless battles before the 1st battle.” This means the headsets would be used in live combat training, so that military men would be better at detecting, deciding and engaging before the enemy. 

“Augmented reality technology will provide troops with more and better information to make decisions. This new work extends our longstanding, trusted relationship with the Department of Defense to this new area,” a spokesperson for Microsoft told TechCrunch

Microsoft has sold around 50,000 units of its HoloLens AR headset, according to a video made for the European Patent Office this spring. That’s just half of the total number of headsets the Army is planning to purchase under the Integrated Visual Augmentation System program. 

HoloLens has yet to establish a large consumer market. So given the military contract, the Army would be Microsoft’s most important consumers to date. However, Microsoft still needs to meet the demands the U.S. Army listed in the bidding documentation if it wishes to really build a solid connection with the military. 

According to Bloomberg, the Army expects Microsoft to come up with devices that differ from the latter’s consumer-grade products. The specialized headsets must have combat-ready features like night vision, thermal sensing and technologies that measure vital signs, examine concussions and protect hearing. 

Back in August, the Army met with 25 companies who were interested in participating the bidding in some way. Raytheon Co., Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corp. and Lockheed Martin Corp. were among those companies. Magic Leap, a startup that works on head-mounted virtual retinal displays, also pursued the contract.