Kuo: Investors are taking a wait-and-see approach to Apple’s AR headset.
While many are champing at the bit to see Apple’s new AR headset, some investors are more interested in potential AI announcements at WWDC, according to a tweet today from supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
As Kuo explains it, the headset “may not be a substantial revenue and profit contributor for suppliers in the next two years compared to AI.”
A short history of every time Apple CEO Tim Cook praised augmented realityLaura Normand / The Verge
With Tim Cook as CEO, Apple has become the most valuable company in the world, having passed a $3 trillion market cap in the past and sitting at around $2.6 trillion as of this writing. For all of his nearly 12 years as the head of the company, though, there hasn’t been one single product tied to him the way the iPhone, iPad, and revitalized Mac computers are so inextricably linked to Steve Jobs.
But while Cook’s impact on the company has largely been in his operational mastery and the massive pay-off of his strategy in pivoting to services, he’s consistently found time to talk about one platform as potentially game-changing without fully committing to the tech through actual new product releases: augmented reality.
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Augmented reality needs an iPhone momentApple turned the iPod into a status symbol. A headset might be a taller order. Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images
As Apple prepares its long-rumored jump into augmented reality on Monday, doubts have shadowed every step of the way. There are reports of frequent changes in direction and skepticism inside Apple’s ranks. The device has allegedly been hard to manufacture and required numerous compromises. The process has taken years longer than Apple expected. And at a rumored $3,000, even Apple reportedly expects slow short-term sales.
But among AR professionals, the mood is jubilant. “This is the single greatest thing that could happen to this industry,” says Jay Wright, CEO of VR / AR collaboration platform Campfire 3D. “Whether you make hardware or software. We’re excited about it.”
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Apple’s VR/AR goggles might come with some important warning labels.
Apple’s recent focus on accessibility in its devices includes features like the upcoming Personal Voice and Assistive Access mode. Now, according to Mark Gurman, Apple’s considering including warnings that people with specific health conditions should not buy or use the headset that it’s expected to reveal next week.
That includes people with Meniere’s Disease, past traumatic brain injuries, post-concussion syndrome, migraines and vertigo.
A similar notice (PDF) for Meta’s Quest notes the risk of seizures and possible interference with medical devices. In another tweet, Gurman said Apple could add additional warnings for ADHD, anxiety, pacemakers, pregnancy, and more.
Ten years later, here’s the second-generation Leap gesture controller.
The original $80 Leap gesture controller debuted so long ago that we compared it to the Kinect. However, unlike Microsoft’s Xbox accessory, Leap is still kicking.
Now known as Ultraleap after a 2019 merger, it’s showing off the Leap Motion Control 2 (via RoadtoVR) and retiring the old device. The new $139 unit will begin shipping this summer, and new Gemini software for it is coming to macOS — and with its positioning as a VR accessory, you can probably guess why that’s suddenly a priority.
Key improvements over the original Leap Motion Controller include higher resolution cameras, an increased field of view, and 25% lower power consumption, all in a 30% smaller package for optimum placement and convenience.
It is the most flexible camera ever developed by Ultraleap and is compatible across platforms and complimentary hardware including VR/MR/AR headsets, PCs, and holographic displays.
Apple’s rumored VR headset could have ridiculously high-end screensIllustration: The Verge
Apple’s rumored mixed reality headset might have extremely pixel-dense and bright displays, according to a tweet from Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants, who has shared accurate information about Apple products in the past. Young says that the AR / VR headset will be equipped with two 1.41-inch Micro OLED screens, each with 4,000 ppi, and they’ll be able to go beyond 5,000 nits of brightness. You should also be able to see 4K resolution per eye, he said in a follow-up tweet.
Based on previous reporting, it already seems like the headset could be a monster device, and displays like these could make it even more of a high-end product. Meta’s Quest 2 offers 773 ppi and 100 nits of brightness, and while that’s not a totally fair comparison given the likely vast gulf between Apple’s rumored $3,000 device and the comparatively more affordable Quest 2, it still shows just how impressive Apple’s headset might be.
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Grab your iPhone or iPad and check out Apple’s “AR Experience” teaser ahead of WWDC.
Apple has a little AR teaser for WWDC (spotted by MacRumors). To see it, visit the Apple Events website using Safari on your iPhone or iPad and tap “AR Experience,” point your camera at a wall, and you’ll get a colorful animated logo with June 6th, 2023 — the WWDC keynote date — printed inside.
Apple’s mixed reality headset is expected to be the biggest announcement at this year’s WWDC.
The Apple logo hints at the company’s rumored headset. Image: The Verge
Look who got an invite to WWDC this year.
UploadVR editor Ian Hamilton says he received his first-ever invite from Apple to attend its WWDC keynote on June 5th.
Sure, such a thing could simply be a coincidence. But if you’re Apple and going to unveil your first mixed reality headset, it would certainly make sense to have someone from one of the leading VR publications in the audience!
Apple registers “xrOS” wordmark ahead of headset launch.
Apple’s so-called “Reality Pro” AR/VR headset that could cost as much as $3,000 is said to be running on an operating system called xrOS — a stylized wordmark for its “extended reality OS” that Apple wants to own. Seems like a solid bet at this point, but we’ll know for sure when WWDC kicks off on June 5th.
Oculus co-founder likes Apple’s mixed reality headset.
Palmer Luckey who, as the primary inventor of the Oculus Rift, should know a thing or two about VR headsets, tweeted out his one-line approval ahead of its expected unveiling on June 5th.
Then again, Luckey’s also a documented shitposter and troll with a sometimes bad goatee who failed to make VR an Apple-sized success while at Facebook, so.
WSJ agrees Apple’s ski-goggles + battery-pack mixed reality headset is nigh.
What’s better than the most reliable Apple scoopster telling you what Cupertino’s got cooking? More sources corroborating the same. With the WSJ now citing its own “people familiar with the project,” Apple’s long-rumored “Reality Pro” seems that tiny bit more likely. Another thing the WSJ is corroborating, though, is a potential delay.
What do Apple’s mixed reality headset and smartwatch have in common?
Bloomberg’s Apple correspondent Mark Gurman thinks the iPhone maker could take a scattershot approach to its headset.
It’ll reportedly launch with everything from games, to fitness services, productivity tools, and book reading, before Apple focuses in on what works based on feedback.
It was a similar story with the Apple Watch. It’s now marketed for fitness and wellness, but Apple originally pitched it as everything from a luxury timepiece to a communication device.
Here’s our best look yet at what Apple’s announcing in JuneApple’s 16-inch MacBook Pro, announced earlier this year. Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge
Apple’s long-anticipating mixed reality headset won’t be the only piece of hardware it announces at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June. That’s according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, who’s published a new overview of the event. Expected launches include new MacBooks, as well as a “major” update to the Apple Watch’s watchOS software.
Let’s start with the Macs. Gurman doesn’t explicitly say which macOS-powered computers Apple could announce in June, but lists around half a dozen devices it currently plans to release this year or early 2024. There’s an all new 15-inch MacBook Air, an updated 13-inch MacBook Air, and new 13-inch and “high-end” MacBook Pros. Meanwhile on the Mac side Apple still needs to replace its last Intel-powered device, the Mac Pro, with an Apple Silicon model, and it also reportedly has plans to refresh its all-in-one 24-inch iMac.
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Apple’s Tim Cook says AR and VR are for ‘connection’ and ‘communication’Image: Laura Normand / The Verge
At some point in the near future, Apple’s going to launch a mixed reality headset. That seems all but certain. The exact when and what and how much? All very up in the air. But one thing hasn’t changed: Tim Cook’s vision for AR and VR. For almost a decade, Apple’s CEO has been banging the drum that AR is more important than VR and that AR is fundamentally about bringing people together. And he’s still at it.
“If you think about the technology itself with augmented reality, just to take one side of the AR/VR piece, the idea that you could overlay the physical world with things from the digital world could greatly enhance people’s communication, people’s connection,” Cook told GQ’s Zach Baron in a long and very interesting profile just published by the magazine. Cook told Baron that he’s interested in collaboration; he said something about measuring glass walls; he said his thinking on glasses-as-gadget has changed over the years.
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These parts could be the first leak of Apple’s mixed-reality headsetIllustration: The Verge
There’s a chance we just got a look at some cables and sensors for Apple’s upcoming and much-rumored virtual / augmented reality headset. Photos from MrWhite128, a protected Twitter account, which were reposted by MacRumors and 9to5Mac, appear to show ribbon cables that look like they’d fit perfectly in a set of eye-shaped goggles.
It’s not obvious from the pictures what exactly the cables would do beyond connecting the left and right sides of the headset — without context, there’s not a ton to be gleaned from them. The leaker also shared pictures of a cable that has three bulbous sections, which could be some sort of sensor or camera array. The headset is rumored to have color-passthrough capabilities that let you see the real world outside of it, similar to the Meta Quest.
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Apple is reportedly working on a way to make AR apps that’s as simple as talking to Siri“Hey Siri, make an AR version of the Apple logo.” Illustration by Nick Barclay / The Verge
Apple is apparently working on a way to let you make apps for its long-rumored mixed reality headset using Siri, according to a new report from The Information. Yes, that Siri, the one that routinely messes up basic requests or errors out in frustrating ways, will apparently be able to create entire augmented reality (AR) apps that you’ll be able to share with others on the App Store.
The technology behind this app-building tool comes from a 2017 acquisition of a startup named Fabric Software, which The Information is the first to report on. According to The Information, the development tool could “allow users to build an app with virtual animals moving around a room and over or around real-life objects without the need to design the animal from scratch, program its animations and calculate its movement in a 3D space with obstacles.” I suspect there will be a non-Siri option as well; The Information says Apple wants to make the tool like Minecraft and Roblox, which both offer user-friendly ways to make virtual worlds.
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Apple’s ‘Reality Pro’ VR headset sure sounds like a monster deviceIllustration by Nick Barclay / The Verge
Apple’s long-rumored VR / AR headset could be packed with ambitious technologies, including advanced hand tracking, the ability to see your Mac’s display, and even recreating digital versions of users in one-on-one FaceTime conversations, according to an extensive new report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman.
Much of the advanced technologies will be enabled by “several” external cameras that can track your hands as well as “sensors within the gadget’s housing” that can be used to read your eyes, Gurman reports. You’ll apparently be able to just look at something onscreen to select it and then pinch your fingers together to activate it, meaning the headset won’t require external controllers, like the Meta’s high-end Quest Pro and Sony’s upcoming PlayStation VR2. Gurman says that the headset will let users switch between VR and AR by twisting a digital crown, something that was also reported by The Information earlier this month.
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Apple reportedly shelved its plans to release AR glasses anytime soonIllustration by Nick Barclay / The Verge
Another Apple rumor from Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman focuses on the company’s efforts to create game-changing augmented reality glasses that could make picking up your iPhone obsolete — if they’re ever built.
The race to develop consumer-friendly AR glasses is in full swing, despite notable misfires like Google’s abandoned Glass project and Microsoft’s now enterprise- and military-focused HoloLens.
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Apple’s mixed reality headset might let you switch out of VR with a digital crownGood use of a digital crown, IMO. Illustration by Nick Barclay / The Verge
Apple’s long-rumored mixed reality headset might let users switch between viewing the real world and virtual reality with a physical dial, according to an extensive new report about the headset from The Information. The headset is expected to offer color passthrough that could give you a better look at your surroundings while wearing the device, and it seems like this dial, which is apparently on the right side, could be one way Apple will let you see what’s around you. Apple Watches and the AirPods Max already have physical knobs — in Apple terms, the “digital crown” — though the one on the headset apparently won’t have haptic feedback.
The headset may also have special technology to make them work well with Apple’s AirPods wireless headphones. The headset will include the same H2 chip included with the second-generation AirPods Pro, and when the two devices are connected, the chip enables “an ultra-low-latency mode,” The Information reports. If you don’t have AirPods Pro, The Information says that Apple has made a headband with built-in speakers. Other Bluetooth headphones apparently have lag between what you see and what you hear while wearing the headset, and The Information says it won’t have a headphone jack for wired headphones. So if you want private listening while using the headset, compatible AirPods models might end up being a must.
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