Though Apple seems to have shifted its augmented reality (AR) focus to smartphones, a new report from often-reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicates that the tech giant could have plans to release an AR headset in the second quarter of 2020.
In Kuo’s latest TF International Securities research note, as first reported by MacRumors, the analyst states that Apple will work with third-party brands to launch a head-mounted AR device in the second quarter of 2020. Back in March, Kuo predicted that Apple could have plans to release an AR device at some point in 2020. Now, it looks like Kuo has honed in on a specific release window.
In July, DigiTimes reported that Apple suspended its augmented reality headset project, though code uncovered in iOS 13 indicated that some form of AR device could still be in the works. MacRumors also uncovered an icon in Apple’s Find My app that showed off an AR or VR headset that looked very similar to Google Cardboard.
Kuo says that Apple’s AR headset will be positioned as an iPhone accessory, with processing power, connectivity and even the display being offloaded to the smartphone.
It sounds like this rumoured AR headset likely works very similarily to Samsung’s slowly dying Gear VR headset. While Apple could have a different take on the concept, if these rumours turn out to be accurate, the tech giant is a little late to market with the technology. That said, instead of VR, Apple’s rumoured headset is focused on AR.
In the same note, Kuo states that Apple’s 2020 iPhones will feature a design similar to the iPhone 5 and that they will support 5G.