Apple's AR Glasses Could Launch by 2022 as Suppliers Reportedly Ramp Up Development
Apple's rumored augmented reality glasses are under development and could launch by 2022, according to industry sources cited by DigiTimes. The full report has yet to be released, but a paywalled preview reads as follows:
Apple AR glasses under development
Taiwan-based optical component suppliers are engaged in the development of Apple's augmented reality smart glasses, which may be commercialized by 2022, according to industry sources.
This follows a report from The Information in November that claimed Apple is developing two head-worn products, including a combination AR/VR headset for release in 2022 and "full-fledged" AR glasses for release by 2023. Those plans were corroborated by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, who said the headset could be released as early as 2021.
The Information claimed that Apple's initial headset will resemble Facebook's Oculus Quest, but with a "sleeker design" that makes "heavy use of fabrics and lightweight materials to ensure the device is comfortable to wear for extended periods of time." The headset is expected to have a "high-resolution display" that will "allow users to read small type and see other people standing in front of and behind virtual objects."
The report claimed that Apple is planning to reach out to third-party developers as early as 2021 to encourage them to build apps for the hardware.
The headset would be followed up by Apple's rumored AR glasses that would be designed to "be worn all day." The Information previously reported that some prototypes "looked like high-priced sunglasses with thick frames that house the battery and chips," but the final design could change. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said the glasses will be "lightweight."
Early reports had pegged a 2020 release for Apple's headset, but the company reportedly pushed back the project. Given the current pandemic, the timeframe may continue to shift, but Apple's interest in augmented reality hardware is clear.