There have been rumors of launching a new Apple Augmented Reality headset for a while, but the exact date Apple plans to unveil the product is still unclear. We'll go over the features we expect from Apple's new AR/VR headset.
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The first rumors of Apple's headset came out in 2017 when Bloomberg announced that Apple planned to release it in 2020. The report stated that Apple was internally testing an upcoming headset with an integrated system like Apple's Apple Watch Series 1 chipset and would be running the brand new "rOS" operating system based on iOS.
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Financial Times later reported that Apple was working on augmented reality glasses that will feature 3D cameras and depend heavily on iPhone to function. Apple released the ARKit API in iOS 11 that further enhanced the technology of augmented reality for iOS applications.
In the early months of 2018, Apple began to discuss with manufacturers of elements to support AR and VR devices, such as eMagin, which makes OLED displays for this kind of headset. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo stated that Apple was planning to start production in mass quantities of its first product with augmented reality between 2019 and 2020; however, he cautioned that plans might change based on design and supply limitations.
9to5Mac in 2019 discovered references to HTML0 in iOS code that confirmed rumors about Apple working on a brand new AR device. A brand new internal system known as StarBoard can render and manage AR photos on iPhone and display the images in an AR headset. It also supported reports of an Apple Watch-like device. To the original Apple Watch with WatchKit apps.
iOS 13 code also revealed that Apple was testing AR mode by using applications like Maps, Find My, and Quick Look (to explore web content using AR) and the APIs that games use and other apps. Since then, Apple has been filing patents on the device that can "provide 3D virtual perspectives of the user's environment by virtual content. "
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Bloomberg described the Apple AR headset as glasses that display emails with text games, maps, and a and by using holographic displays within the lens. In the calendar year, Mark Gurman revealed that Apple offered two choices for its AR headsets, including AR glasses, with the second being an AR/VR headset that is more powerful.
Based on the Information, this headset is designed to bring together the best aspects of AR and VR, allowing the best gaming and VR experiences. On the other hand, the lightweight and slim devices will offer AR only and will be focused on overlaying data such as maps on top of what the user sees outside in real life.
Another report by The Information said that Apple had made significant progress on semitransparent lenses for its AR glasses, introduced into production for trial purposes in July of this year.
The Information reports its sources to claim that Apple has been working on semitransparent lenses and its primary manufacturing partner Foxconn since 2018. The timing also aligns with the date when Apple acquired Akonia Holographics -- a firm specializing in liquid crystals on silicon displays to project images onto special lenses.
In February 2021, the Information published images of Apple's hybrid reality headset based on Information from people who were familiar with the device. The headset appears to blend elements of design from AirPods Max with other pieces from AirPods Max with others from the Apple Watch, plus a large, curved display on the front.
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Recent rumors suggest that the device targets advanced users since it will have two displays with 8K resolution to display high-quality images. Ming-Chi Kung believes that the AR/VR device from Apple will have sophisticated 3D sensors capable of recognizing the objects in the scene and recognizing gestures made by users' hands.
Although he initially stated in the past that "Apple Glasses" were expected to depend on iPhone however heavily, Kuo's analyst claims that the headset will feature a more sophisticated chip that will function without a smartphone nearby. A different report by Kuo says that this headset is expected to weigh around 350 grams.
The technology of this kind is not likely to come cheap. Some analysts think that Apple could charge as high as $3000 for the mixed-reality headset.
A variety of sources claim it was likely that the AR/VR device from Apple will launch at the end of 2020, appears that Apple may be planning to unveil the device in 2022. It isn't easy to imagine an announcement coming before WWDC in which Apple unveils new tools and software for developers.
Currently, the probable scenario is that Apple's headset is expected to be on sale in the latter half of 2022. Of course, the whole thing could be altered until Apple can officially unveil the new product.
Apple has constantly been improving its ARKit API and the cameras that are on its devices to give users an enhanced experience in augmented reality. The LiDAR scanner is a new feature launched in the new 2020 iPad Pro, and the iPhone 12 Pro will be something that can be incorporated in a brand future AR device.
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