Apple’s new “mixed reality” headset is about to launch, officially opening the metaverse era

On June 7th, Apple’s WWDC 2022 (Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, WWDC) arrived as scheduled, the core idea is to find a “new direction” for the product, and Apple’s official description is “iOS will become more In the two-hour keynote speech, Apple successively introduced the functional updates of the four major operating systems, iOS 16, WatchOS 9, macOS 13, and iPadOS 16, and unveiled the MacBook Air and Macbook Pro equipped with the new M2 chip.

Speaking of Apple WWDC 2022, it is not for Amway Apple’s hardware or software, but in this WWDC2022, there is a hardware product that has been expected to be told that due to battery life and performance issues, this device is not expected to be released until 2023. , This is Apple’s first Mixed Reality (mixed reality) head-mounted display, which can be called a beacon of the arrival of the metaverse era, and a novice equipment that opens the metaverse. While Apple’s announcements at WWDC 2022 have excited fans and developers, in fact, the outside world is paying more attention to the release of Apple’s mixed reality headset and its associated software, realityOS.

The Goldman Sachs report stated that the metaverse, a digital world created by a combination of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and the Internet, is based on the transition to a new “immersive hardware interface platform”. The “main competition” for VR will be between Apple and Meta. Apple may be struggling to expand its ecosystem, and Meta is looking to build a user base with “attractive hardware pricing and a compelling experience”; for Apple, Goldman Sachs gives the leader in Metaverse technology development so very It has a high evaluation and predicts that Apple may launch related products in early 2023.

Although Apple said it has hired Hollywood directors such as Jon Favreau to develop video content for its augmented reality (AR) or mixed reality (MR) headset. However, Bloomberg previously reported that the current heat dissipation problem of Apple’s first MR product has not been solved; it seems that if you want to swim in the Metaverse, you still have to continue to wait patiently.

Apple’s MR device products have been developed for nearly 8 years. Mike Rockwell, Apple’s vice president, is the main person in charge of the entire VR/AR device research and development project, while Dan Riccio, Apple’s former head of hardware engineering, is responsible for supervising the progress of the project. The R&D team’s offices are miles from Apple’s headquarters. At the end of 2015, Mike Rockwell invited Metaio co-founder Peter Meier and Apple manager Fletcher Rothkopf, who was involved in the development of Apple Watch, to participate in the AR/VR project.

WWDC 2022: all the news coming out of Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference - The Verge

With the continuous expansion of the project, the entire R&D team has 2,000 employees involved in product R&D, belonging to Apple’s technology R&D department. Among them, the relevant persons in charge of the hardware and software development of the iPhone, iPad and Mac, as well as from NASA, audio and video employees in other fields.

On December 8 last year, well-known analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in a research report that Apple has begun planning the second-generation AR/MR headset, which is expected to ship in the second half of 2024. Compared with the first generation, which is expected to be mass-produced in the fourth quarter of 2022, the improvements of the second generation include lighter weight, exterior design, battery system and processor.

Ming-Chi Kuo also said, “Apple’s first-generation headset may weigh 300g to 400g, and we believe that weight improvement will be one of the key selling points of the second-generation product. We predict that Apple will design the product as soon as 2024 to 2026. A new battery system optimized for headsets with the goal of reducing weight and improving mobility.”

According to IDC data, the VR/AR headset market shipments will increase by 92% in 2021, reaching more than 11 million units. Meta’s Quest 2 headset dominated, accounting for about 78% of total sales. However, due to Apple’s hardware strength and its product ecology, Apple’s entry into this market may promote a substantial increase in sales in this market. But Apple will also compete in this field with giants such as Microsoft, Google, Meta, and Sony, expecting Apple’s products to change the world again.