Apple plans to release AR Headset by 2022, Glasses by 2023

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited May 2020
In a highly uncharacteristic move, Apple last month is said to have briefed a larger group of employees on its plans to release an Augmented Reality (AR) headset by the year 2022 and a pair of more sophisticated AR glasses the following year.

An iPad at Apple Park using augmented reality
An iPad at Apple Park using augmented reality


Apple has been rumored to be working on an augmented reality headset or smart glasses for some time, and has used considerable resources in the field of AR and VR. While Apple has so far declined to publicly offer details of when to expect AR-equipped head-mounted hardware in the future, if at all, it is allegedly offering up timelines to employees.

In a recent internal meeting, Apple Vice President Mike Rockwell is claimed by sources of The Information to have led a presentation with other Apple executives over the design and features of an AR headset. Rockwell is the chief of the team behind Apple's AR and VR development.

The meeting itself is said to have featured details about the design and features of the headset, though importantly it also offered timelines for Apple's intended release schedule. The initial headset is tipped to launch in 2022, while a pair of AR smart glasses will arrive the following year in 2023.

Notably the presentation was made to a large number of employees, with enough in attendance to fill the 1,000-seat Steve Jobs Theater, though it is unclear if those taking part were working on AR projects directly as part of the team, or if they were based in other areas of the company.

Apple's decision to allow such a large internal presentation to occur is likely to be a good sign for the proposed devices regarding their release, as it would be unlikely for Apple to showcase an unreleased product to that many staff if it wasn't making significant process in development. The meeting, which took place in October, still required a considerable amount of secrecy, with attendees required to wrap their iPhones with tamper-proof stickers with unique QR codes to block the cameras.

As well as discussing the features of the proposed hardware, the presentation also included videos and explanations relating to each, updates from other teams involved in the project, and a discussion of the "thermal architecture" of the headset by executives.

The timeline of the AR headset or smart glasses is far longer than what has been raised by analysts and rumors. Recent reports and a prediction from Ming-Chi Kuo put the headwear for release in mid-2020, far earlier than today's report indicates. There has even been the claim of Apple working with game distributor Valve Software on an AR display destined for 2020, with existing supply chain assemblers Pegatron and Quanta Computer also linked to the project.

There has been a lot of evidence demonstrating Apple is keenly working on AR hardware, including references in iOS 13's code for stereo AR apps and stereoscopic content, along with the codename "Garta."

Apple has also filed numerous patent applications relating to AR and VR hardware, including gaze tracking, laser rage-finding, holographic elements, and thermal solutions.
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 23
    Maybe they’re just sussing out internal spies and leakers by spreading fake rumors.
    flyingdplkrupp
  • Reply 2 of 23
    couldn't they push the release out any further..?
  • Reply 3 of 23
    tjwolftjwolf Posts: 424member
    Highly unlikely for Apple to leak anything intentionally - much less to a large audience.  And what would be the point?  I could understand it if Apple wanted to get design feedback from a few more people - after all, glasses are the most difficult wearable to get right, given that they'll sit on our faces all day.  But a presentation doesn't even serve that purpose.  Fake news I think (and I don't mean that using the Trump'ian definition of 'anything that disagrees with me'.)
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 4 of 23
    AR is pretty cool but having to hold a phone or tablet in front of you damages the experience.

    I just don't see glasses being that cheap, even in 3 to 4 years. A fair bit more tech involved than in VR.
  • Reply 5 of 23
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 3,210member
    2022 lines up with either a mature 5nm process from TSMC or maybe a new 3nm process. 

    That timeline also make microLED and solid state batteries more likely. 

    Those are the enabling hardware technologies for really good AR goggles/glasses. 
    kuraiminicoffeeapplesnoranges
  • Reply 6 of 23
    hentaiboyhentaiboy Posts: 1,252member
    The meeting, which took place in October, still required a considerable amount of secrecy, with attendees required to wrap their iPhones with tamper-proof stickers with unique QR codes to block the cameras.”

    Thank you for working for Apple. We value your labour but we don’t trust you.
  • Reply 7 of 23
    hentaiboy said:
    “The meeting, which took place in October, still required a considerable amount of secrecy, with attendees required to wrap their iPhones with tamper-proof stickers with unique QR codes to block the cameras.”

    Thank you for working for Apple. We value your labour but we don’t trust you.
    Are you pretending all humans are trustworthy just because they work at Apple? Real life evidence says you’re wrong.
    lkruppmike1fastasleep
  • Reply 8 of 23
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,381member
    hentaiboy said:
    “The meeting, which took place in October, still required a considerable amount of secrecy, with attendees required to wrap their iPhones with tamper-proof stickers with unique QR codes to block the cameras.”

    Thank you for working for Apple. We value your labour but we don’t trust you.
    Apple should just leave every single door in their campus unlocked, keep future products visible at all times, and leave all meetings open to all who wish to attend, even the janitors. Guaranteed not a single photo will be leaked. Because they should just "trust" everyone, and nobody would ever exploit that trust for a second. 

    What fantasy world do you live in?

    StrangeDaysmike1fastasleepmuthuk_vanalingamcornchip
  • Reply 9 of 23
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,557member
    Maybe they’re just sussing out internal spies and leakers by spreading fake rumors.
    My thoughts exactly but this is also why the rumormongers can have it both ways. If the rumor turns out to be true they can pound their chests and trumpet their prowess in crystal ball reading. If the rumor doesn’t pan out they can simply make up a reason plans changed or delayed the release knowing Apple will remain silent.
    edited November 2019
  • Reply 10 of 23
    thttht Posts: 5,353member
    Still conflicted with this type of technology. It would make an interesting UI technology, especially when complimented by smartphones and computers, and have obvious instructional, navigation, entertainment use cases. But it is a form of direct eyeball capture. There’s a reason Facebook loves VR, and they would love nothing more than occupying 100% of your eyeballs, displaying ads, whatever their enragement engine does.

    Hopefully Apple institutes hyper strict rules about apps and advertising on their AR platform.
    cornchip
  • Reply 11 of 23
    HyperealityHypereality Posts: 58unconfirmed, member
    blastdoor said:
    2022 lines up with either a mature 5nm process from TSMC or maybe a new 3nm process. 

    That timeline also make microLED and solid state batteries more likely. 

    Those are the enabling hardware technologies for really good AR goggles/glasses. 

    Yes, its a far more credible timeline than we've heard before.  Another requirement is high speed personal area networking,  with the advances in the Watch and AirPods continuing that will be foundational to the shift from tablet computing (phones, pads) to a wearable UX.  
  • Reply 12 of 23
    AR headsets have been a miserable failure for everyone that attempted to get them to work.  Apple would know better than anyone if the hardware is ready for prime time...

    An Apple headset would be an incredible platform success.  MacOS would instantly become the gaming platform of choice, which would be a huge blow to Windows.  All those $$$ spent on high end gamer gear would be funneled to Apple...

    It would be interesting to see how Apple juggles MacOS and iOS.  Is iOS/hardware powerful enough for next generation AR games? Will 5G be reliable enough...?

  • Reply 13 of 23
    This makes way more sense than previous reports of 2020 release. I cant wait... i believe they will be huge game changers.
    seanismorrisapplesnoranges
  • Reply 14 of 23
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,697member
    It's all a plot to fool Google and Samsung.!
  • Reply 15 of 23
    Weren’t they open with that they are working on something car related? I guess you can’t keep things like that secret if people are gonna walk around Apple campus with a AR headset. 
    edited November 2019
  • Reply 16 of 23
    hentaiboy said:
    “The meeting, which took place in October, still required a considerable amount of secrecy, with attendees required to wrap their iPhones with tamper-proof stickers with unique QR codes to block the cameras.”

    Thank you for working for Apple. We value your labour but we don’t trust you.
    Since word of this leaked, they had good reason to take minimum precautions. Your criticism is especially weird since security at companies remotely close to Apple have security protocols which must be followed.
  • Reply 17 of 23
    How many people have here have done anything serious with the AR that's already here, use some app or game routinely ? Owns any AR headset?  If I had to guess that number would be in the low single digits in a poll..    

    IMHO its a waste of time and money, Sure Apple has that to burn, but I don't think anything that they might come up with will be used widely, so why do it? Unless its a very targeted market, which means the products will be very expensive. I do not think AR is the next big thing, and if Apple has data saying  it is, good for them, we'll see if it actually turns out that way in 3.5 years.
  • Reply 18 of 23
    normang said:
    How many people have here have done anything serious with the AR that's already here, use some app or game routinely ? Owns any AR headset?  If I had to guess that number would be in the low single digits in a poll..    

    IMHO its a waste of time and money, Sure Apple has that to burn, but I don't think anything that they might come up with will be used widely, so why do it? Unless its a very targeted market, which means the products will be very expensive. I do not think AR is the next big thing, and if Apple has data saying  it is, good for them, we'll see if it actually turns out that way in 3.5 years.
    FWIW, many people said the same thing about "tablets" before the release of the iPad. Conventional wisdom was that only certain businesses (esp healthcare) needed tablets. People said tablets were not a consumer device, just a niche for certain professions. 

    Then the iPad became a huge consumer success. 

    Then people said "tablets" are just a consumer device, not for pros. 

    Then the iPad Pro came out. 

    I predict a similar pattern with Apple's AR. 
    applesnorangesapricot88
  • Reply 19 of 23
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    blastdoor said:
    normang said:
    How many people have here have done anything serious with the AR that's already here, use some app or game routinely ? Owns any AR headset?  If I had to guess that number would be in the low single digits in a poll..    

    IMHO its a waste of time and money, Sure Apple has that to burn, but I don't think anything that they might come up with will be used widely, so why do it? Unless its a very targeted market, which means the products will be very expensive. I do not think AR is the next big thing, and if Apple has data saying  it is, good for them, we'll see if it actually turns out that way in 3.5 years.
    FWIW, many people said the same thing about "tablets" before the release of the iPad. Conventional wisdom was that only certain businesses (esp healthcare) needed tablets. People said tablets were not a consumer device, just a niche for certain professions. 

    Then the iPad became a huge consumer success. 

    Then people said "tablets" are just a consumer device, not for pros. 

    Then the iPad Pro came out. 

    I predict a similar pattern with Apple's AR. 
    I predict massive failures of imagination with this one. Moreso than with iPad, the Watch, AirPods, etc....
  • Reply 20 of 23
    normang said:
    How many people have here have done anything serious with the AR that's already here, use some app or game routinely ? Owns any AR headset?  If I had to guess that number would be in the low single digits in a poll..    

    IMHO its a waste of time and money, Sure Apple has that to burn, but I don't think anything that they might come up with will be used widely, so why do it? Unless its a very targeted market, which means the products will be very expensive. I do not think AR is the next big thing, and if Apple has data saying  it is, good for them, we'll see if it actually turns out that way in 3.5 years.
    Ever hear of Pokémon Go? It's an AR game that had like ~150 million active monthly users at some point last year. That's just one example.

    People are still saying the same thing about VR, despite the fact that the first generation of hardware is very impressive and have sold in the millions, something like 5 million of Sony's PSVR alone. I own one, and it's literally game changing. 
    applesnoranges
Sign In or Register to comment.