Apple wants AR headset to 'succeed' the iPhone by 2020

Apple wants AR headset to 'succeed' the iPhone by 2020

Apple hopes to be able to have the requisite technology to make its headset a reality by 2019 and then get it to customers soon after.

That Apple is working on an Augmented Reality headset is by now an open secret, after the device was all but confirmed Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The report also suggests that the device is running on a new chip and operating system.

Cook has been shouting out the potential of AR for a long time, but as recently as October, he told reporters that "the technology itself doesn't exist" yet for anyone to produce a quality augmented reality device.

The report further goes to point that Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke on Good Morning America saying "We're already seeing things that will transform the way you work, play, connect and learn". He didn't outright deny the rumours though, instead explaining there are technological issues preventing AR going mainstream this decade. However, Apple declined to issue a comment on its plans. Apple is using HTC Vive headset to experiment with AR experiences, and next year it should have a headset that plugs into an iPhone like Gear VR and Samsung's devices. In the build-up to this headset's launch, Apple will be improving the ARKit to make it easier for developers to create content.

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We don't know too many details about the headset, but it sounds like it will be a direct competitor to Microsoft Hololens.

Apple's product would have its own display, processor and operating system via a "system-on-a-package" component similar to the one in the Apple Watch. He said he's especially concerned with the "display technology" that would be required to place virtual elements over the real world. Scattered across office parks in both Cupertino and Sunnyvale, California, the team is working on several hardware and software projects under the umbrella code name of "T288". Augmented reality on the other hand is basically a digital world overlay for the real world. It will also have a brand new OS, now labeled "rOS" for "reality operating system".

Apple has not yet finalised how users will interact with the headset, Bloomberg reports, though it seems to be exploring three main ways of interactions: Touch, voice (via Siri), and head gestures. The team is now working on an AR device that will use the iPhone's screen, camera and processors, but notes that it will not be available for consumers.

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