Apple edges toward AR hardware launch - Mobile World Live

Apple edges toward AR hardware launch

11 NOV 2019

Apple could make a long-anticipated move into the AR device segment in 2022, at least two years later than dates mooted recently by analysts, The Information reported.

The news outlet stated Apple chiefs discussed its plans at a closed-door meeting with staff last month. The vendor plans to launch an AR headset in 2022, followed by glasses in 2023, it stated, noting the timings are somewhat behind recent predictions for the move.

In a related report, CNBC cited a tip by prominent Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo in October that the vendor would enter the AR hardware market in 2020 as an example of the slide in its timeline. However, the timing of the prediction is unclear, meaning it may have come before the internal meeting.

The vendor stoked the rumour mill in February when Bloomberg reported it named long-time executive Frank Casanova as its first ever head of marketing for AR products.

Apple’s headset, codenamed N301, is expected to be similar in size to Facebook’s Oculus Quest VR unit, and will not require a computer to be used. The glasses (N421) are tipped to be smaller. Both are likely to feature cameras to scan surrounding environments, with overlays of objects or information.

In August, analyst company CCS Insight forecast VR and AR headset shipments will hit 14.7 million units in 2019, a 76 per cent year-on-year rise. Senior analyst Leo Gebbie said “We believe the time is right for standalone devices such as the Oculus Go and Oculus Quest to take the market by storm.”

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Manny Pham

Manny joined Mobile World Live in September 2019 as a reporter based in London. He has previous experience in telecoms having worked for B2B publication Mobile News for three years where he climbed up to the position of Features Editor....

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