Apple last week demoed its upcoming AR/VR headset to Apple board members, suggesting that the device’s release could take place in the not-so-distant future.
Bloomberg reports that Apple has also ramped up development of the software that runs on the headset, with that software expected to be called “RealityOS,” or rOS for short.
Apple has been working an AR/VR device for quite a few years and the first version is said to be a hybrid headset that has a curved visor and a soft mesh that fits against the face, with an Apple Watch-like strap to hold it in place. Apple is said to be working to make the headset lighter and more comfortable than competing headsets.
Apple’s much-rumored headset is said to boast two 4K micro-LED displays, 15 optical modules, two main processors, Wi-Fi 6E connectivity, eye tracking, a see-through AR mode, object tracking, hand gesture controls, and more, all in a lightweight design. While the headset’s pricing has not yet been confirmed, some reports say it will cost around $3,000.
The headset’s in-house designed chip will be one of the differentiators between it and competitors. The device is expected to boast more than 10 sensors (including cameras) combined.
While some analysts have said Apple’s mixed reality headset will hit the market in late 2022, there are those that see things differently. Analyst Jeff Pu of Haitong International Securities recently said that the product may be delayed until 2023.
Pu says that Apple’s new headset may face a slight delay for the first quarter of 2023. The analyst also believes that Apple will sell something between 1 million and 1.5 million units of its new headset in its first year.
Bloomberg suggests that the AR/VR headset could be released as early as the end of the year, though a consumer release isn’t planned until 2023.