Vive, Oculus are pocket change compared to Microsoft's Hololens dev kit

US$3000 for augmented reality headset

And you thought HTC Vive looked expensive at US$799? You'll need a bank loan to buy Microsoft's HoloLens.

The price of the augmented reality headset was officially confirmed on the Windows blog earlier today. It'll set you back (sharp intake of breath) US$3000.

That will buy you a developer edition headset, which will start shipping on the 30th of March. You'll also get a fully featured software bundle, with 3D modelling app HoloStudio, virtual tourism app HoloTour, and three games.

Fragments is a "mixed reality crime drama that unfolds in your own environment", Young Conker turns your furniture into platforms for Rare's foul-mouthed mascot to clamber over, and RoboRaid is the first person shooter shown on-stage during the HoloLens reveal at last year's BUILD conference.

It's all rather bare bones, but that's the point. HoloLens isn't competing with Vive and Oculus; the augmented reality headset overlays computer-generated visuals over your view of the world in real time, rather than replacing your vision with an entirely computerised view.

The first run of HoloLens headsets are aimed at developers, not gamers, and the high price is supposed to put off anyone that doesn't know how to code apps or games for it.

Even so, US$3000 is a massive chunk of change - you've got to imagine Microsoft will be slashing that price before HoloLens ever makes it's way to regular customers.