Apple's Work on realityOS 'Wrapping Up' as Focus Turns to Suite of AR/VR Apps Ahead of Headset Launch

Apple's work on the first version of its long-rumored mixed reality headset's operating system is concluding, while new hires related to the device are ramping up ahead of launch next year, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.

apple ar headset concept 1Concept render based on purported leaked information by Ian Zelbo

The headset itself is rumored to run "rOS" or "realityOS," internally codenamed "Oak." Apple's work on realityOS has been rumored since 2017, but the existence of the operating system was finally confirmed earlier this year when references to it were found in App Store upload logs and Apple open source code.

In his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman said that realityOS "will include mixed-reality versions of core Apple apps like Messages, FaceTime and Maps." The first version of the operating system is reportedly "wrapping up internally and should be ready for the new hardware next year." Gurman previously said that Apple's mixed-reality headset will focus on gaming, media consumption, and communication. He believes that Memojis and SharePlay could be central to the experience.

Gurman added that job listings indicate that Apple is now ramping up hiring related to the device. The company is seeking a software producer with experience in visual effects and game asset pipelines to create content for AR and VR environments, developers that can "build tools and frameworks to enable connected experiences in a 3D mixed-reality world," and engineers who can work on development tools including App Intents, which let apps work with features like Siri and Shortcuts. The job listings also suggest that Apple is planning to build a video service for the headset, featuring 3D content that can be played in virtual reality.

In addition to a wave of new hires, Apple has reportedly also made additions to the management team overseeing the headset's development, bringing in a former senior leader from its self-driving vehicle project and one of its most senior software engineering managers. The nature of the new positions suggest a range of health and productivity apps could be coming to the headset.

DigiTimes believes that Apple's headset will begin mass production in March next year and analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that it could be introduced to the public as soon as January.

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Top Rated Comments

RedTheReader Avatar
21 months ago
I can’t wait until this thing comes out and turns out to be as much of a failure as every other AR/VR headset so that we can finally stop talking about it.
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Andronicus Avatar
21 months ago

I can’t wait until this thing comes out and turns out to be as much of a failure as every other AR/VR headset so that we can finally stop talking about it.
I can’t wait to revisit this post in 10 years when it’s a major success.

It’s like going back to those posts when the first iPod was released and everyone was saying the same thing as you.

It gives me a little giggle.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
citysnaps Avatar
21 months ago

I can’t wait until this thing comes out and turns out to be as much of a failure as every other AR/VR headset so that we can finally stop talking about it.
We?

Or... you could simply ignore what other people find interesting and want to discuss.

You're not required to participate in any discussion.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Marbles1 Avatar
21 months ago
What demographic is the main market for this?

Folks that have the cash to pay for a premium AR/VR headset and are investing in 'gaming' - and specifically Apple gaming (is that even a thing?).

And those who are interested in 'Maps'. I mean ffs. What's the point of this? To have a FaceTime call?

I think this is going to one of those pieces of tech that needs to be way more advanced a form factor before it gets broad appeal.

You need something that is as light as a pair of glasses to begin with. And that's a basic model.

You need to miniaturise the tech so they work inside contact lenses; it should feel unobtrusive.

The niche of people that like this stuff tolerate headsets if the games are outstanding and immersive. Apple have done nothing on games for decades other than fail time and again.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Abazigal Avatar
21 months ago

I can’t wait until this thing comes out and turns out to be as much of a failure as every other AR/VR headset so that we can finally stop talking about it.
People bet against Apple to their own detriment.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gcmexico Avatar
21 months ago
will we be looking back at these comments in a few years, demonstrating again that that most people don't have a clue on what will be successful! LMAO...I for one am looking forward to it, I have the quest2, but will not drop 1500 for a vr headset, where I can't have my full Apple ecosystem...if Apple's VR does what the rumors are saying...Apple does have my attention, full emergence, access to all my Apple movies and shows, be able to use FaceTime, imessage...all running smoothly, yeah I'll pay 1500 for that, for sure? I truly hope they release something AMAZING
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)