Apple's AR headset could arrive in 2022, powered by two processors, according to noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. The device could support both Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) and could sport micro-OLED displays when it is launched next year. Apple has already made strides in AR technology on the iPhone and iPad with the addition of LiDAR technology on the iPhone 12 Pro. The company's AR wearables have been rumoured for several months, and the analyst believes that the company could be looking to replace the iPhone within a decade.
While the Cupertino company is yet to announce any plans for AR or VR headsets in the coming year, Kuo believes that Apple could launch a powerful AR headset in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to a report by 9to5Mac. The rumoured AR headset could feature processing capabilities similar to those of a Mac and could operate independently of a Mac (PC) or an iPhone (phone) while supporting a range of applications.
According to Kuo, Apple's AR headset could be powered by two chips, a powerful one that offers similar power as last year's M1 Mac, and a less powerful chip for handling sensors on the headset. It could come with VR support as well, according to Kuo, who adds that the device could come with two Sony 4K micro-OLED displays.
The analyst also believes that in order to provide the AR headset with its own ecosystem, the company could position it "independently" of the iPhone and the Mac, instead of as an accessory. He also claims that the computing power required by the headset would be higher than that of the iPhone, which requires three optical modules running simultaneously. The AR headset, on the other hand, could require "at least" six to eight optical modules for "continuous see-through AR services," according to the analyst.
Kuo also suggests that Apple could eventually replace the iPhone with AR in a decade, "representing the demand for Ajinomoto Build-up Film (ABF) of AR headsets will exceed at least one billion pieces in ten years," according to the analyst, who adds that the company will have to sell "at least one billon AR devices" in ten years, to replace the iPhone in a decade.