Apple’s $3,000 mixed-reality headsets are coming, and they’re a far cry from the tech of sleek glasses


May 18, 2023 | 11:06 a.m

Apple will launch the long-awaited mixed reality headsets for $3,000 apiece — triple what competitor Meta’s price for a similar product.

The high-tech specifications will be unveiled by Apple CEO Tim Cook at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5, Bloomberg reported.

Apple expects its market competitor to be worn constantly every day, replacing tasks like making FaceTime calls, answering emails, playing games, and browsing the web that are normally done on iPhones or Macs .

The release comes after Meta launched what it called a “portal to the company’s metaverse” last October.

The mixed reality headset, dubbed the Meta Quest Pro, launched for $1,500, but Mark Zuckerberg’s company dropped the price to $1,000 months after its release.

Apple’s high-priced headset, which has been in the works for seven years, is reportedly a far cry from Cook’s original vision of slim glasses you can wear all day, akin to prescription glasses, and instead resemble ski goggles.

Apple CEO Tim Cook will unveil a mixed reality headset that resembles ski goggles at the iPhone maker’s Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5. AFP via Getty Images

By wearing the glasses, gamers can simultaneously experience virtual reality and the physical world, according to the company.

Power is supplied by a separate iPhone-sized battery that is attached to the glasses via a power cord.

According to Bloomberg, Apple reportedly wanted the battery to be integrated into the headset but scrapped the idea of ​​reducing the device’s weight and preventing it from overheating.

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The first-gen product is reportedly still in an experimental mode, with Apple expecting a slower adoption rate compared to wearable products like its wildly popular Apple Watch.

It is expected to be sold under the Reality name.

The company believes that the product’s eventual customization could add more than $25 billion to Apple’s annual sales.

The iPhone maker has invested billions of dollars in the development of the headset over the seven-year production process, but according to Bloomberg, the project does not have unanimous support among the company’s top management.

When Apple releases its mixed reality headset, it will launch alongside Microsoft’s HoloLens 2, which already has hard hat worker editions and has been tested by army soldiers. Microsoft

Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of hardware technologies, has likened the device to a “science project,” sources told Bloomberg.

Srouji reportedly worked on a team building advanced chips for the headset, but he remained skeptical that the time spent on the unreleased technology could hurt the development of new iPhone chips, which he says will lead to more sales would lead.

Another executive, Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, has distanced himself from the project, Bloomberg reported.

According to Apple employees who were involved in the development process and spoke anonymously to Bloomberg, there are also rumors within the company that mixed reality devices could be socially isolating, thereby slowing down their success.

The post reached out to Apple for comment.

Apple’s mixed reality glasses are entering a saturated market and will compete with similar products from competitors like the Microsoft HoloLens 2, which has helmet worker editions and has been tested by army soldiers.

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People familiar with Apple’s project said improvements still need to be made, as features like multi-person video calling and external Mac monitor capabilities aren’t currently as advanced as Apple would like, according to Bloomberg.

According to Bloomberg, Apple hopes to sell 3 million units in the first year and has a plan B to reduce estimates to 1 million — a far cry from the more than 41 million Apple Watches sold in 2022.

Trademark filings last August hinted at possible names the headset could be released under.

Applications received by Bloomberg revealed that the tech giant plans to launch Reality One, Reality Pro and Reality Processor in the US, EU, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Costa Ban Rica and Uruguay.

Though Apple didn’t initiate the filings itself, the applications appeared to follow the same process the iPhone maker has used to secure its products’ names in the past.

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