Watch astronauts make outer space Skype calls with HoloLens

Connecting the International Space Station to Earth one call at a time.

NASA via Getty Images

So why exactly did the crew International Space Station need those HoloLens headsets? For a holographic instruction manual and VoIP calls, of course. Prior to entering orbit, the headset was certified for use on the Weightless Wonder C9 a number of times to ensure it'd work in a zero-G environment in addition to the NEEMO underwater space station analog, according to Victor Luo, the technical lead of NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab. Astronaut Scott Kelly used it to make the first Skype call from outer space to mission control and says he fiddled around with it for about two hours, too.

In that relatively short timeframe, Kelly says he could tell it was tech that could be used immediately. It's stuff we've seen before, but hey, now we can take a gander at it in action and see what that outer-space Skype call really looked like. Spoiler: It's probably a lot less awkward than calling your parents with a webcam typically is.