Apple Mixed reality headset likely to be unveiled today amidst intense anticipation

Apple has the track record but AR/VR is a different beast altogether.
Ameya Paleja
Apple's WWDC 2023 is much anticipated event this year
Apple's WWDC 2023 is much anticipated event this year


The Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is a much-anticipated event every year. This is the event where Apple shares with developers updates in its product lines and operating system software and provides developers with new opportunities to innovate and build some exciting apps.

This year's WWDC, though, is the event that the world is waiting for with bated breath as Apple is expected to foray into the new space of mixed reality- a combination of virtual and augmented realities. (VR/AR)

Even before, Apple unveils its offerings to the public, many have termed this as the "iPhone moment" for the VR/AR industry and expectations are sky-high that yet again Apple will change the technology world for the better.

The mixed-reality headset

For years, Apple has been rumored to be working on a virtual reality headset. never really revealing its progress. Based on these rumors, it appears like Apple will unveil a mixed reality headset at the WWDC with an iOS-like interface and high-resolution immersive displays.

Dubbed Reality One or Reality Pro, the device will allow users to switch between VR and AR using a dial and control it using hands and eye movements, making controllers obsolete. The headset could also have an outward-facing display to display the facial expressions of the user and not make them appear like some form of RoboCop.

Apple Mixed reality headset likely to be unveiled today amidst intense anticipation
Apple would hope that its headsets will change the VR/AR world forever

With CEO Tim Cook stressing the need for "connection" and "communication" when it comes to uses of AR, the headset could also allow users to FaceTime with full face and body renders in addition to access to various games and apps on the device.

Can Apple succeed where others have failed?

The headset is also believed to have been made after overcoming multiple technical challenges and the price of the final product is estimated to be around $3,000. At such a steep ask, the device must supersede expectations and deliver something that no other headset manufacturer has managed before.

One can trust Apple to do both of these things with quite some ease. After all, it did this with the iPhone, and the Apple Watch and it knows very well how to enter the market at the right time with the right product. The company has time and again entered the market after the initial hype around a device has subsided and its mixed reality bet seems no different.

Google, Microsoft, and MagicLeap have also taken shots at the prize in the past decade and failed to make a product that attracts the masses. Mark Zuckerberg's Meta has made some sizable progress in the area but not all its products get the same traction.

Just last week, the company made another effort to woo users to mixed-reality with its Quest 3 headsets but its Meta Quest Pro, a high-end device launched last year, was quite a dud. Amongst headset manufacturers, Meta is quite the leader when it comes to absolute numbers in sales but the product is far from the tool to engage in a new digital universe that Zuckerberg promised.

Since Apple does not just products but the entire ecosystem around it, the WWDC event offers a glimpse of what the device could be really capable of and how developers could leverage it to make some exciting products that users simply do not want to miss.

Apart from the $3,000 price tag, Apple also needs to counter the challenges of using VR/ AR headsets that the likes of Microsoft, Meta, and even Sony have failed to crack so far. Will Apple come out glorious as always or fall severely short of expectations will be known in a few hours from now.

Apple's success might also define if the tech world will continue to talk about artificial intelligence (AI) over the next few months or if there will be a new buzzword in town.

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