From iPhone, iPod, iPad to iWatch, Apple TV, the Apple gadgets have never failed to build excitement around their latest developments. That said, the company might bring in an actual dedicated AR/VR product for the people in the future. Apple has been exploring augmented reality and virtual reality for more than a decade now, based on patent filings. And, with the growing popularity of AR and VR, Apple’s dabbling is growing more serious. In fact, there have been talks around Apple’s next big product – Apple Glasses that will feature AR technology. How do Apple Glasses work? When can we expect this product to be launched? What will be its top features? Will it be an independent product? Or will it have to be synced with the iPhone?
A few years ago, Tim Cook said, “AR can be really great. We have been and continue to invest a lot in this. We are high on AR in the long run. I think AR is big and profound. This is one of those huge things that we will look at and marvel at the start of it.” Perhaps, that should be our cue! What do you think? Read on to know more!
What is AR?
Before we dive into the details of Apple Glasses, let’s quickly run through Augmented Reality – what is AR, what is ARKit, and more.
Assuming that you are familiar with the concept of VR (Virtual Reality), let me tell you that AR (Augmented Reality) works similar to VR but with one difference. While VR lets you immerse completely in a virtual world, AR uses screens or transparent lenses to place digital items in the real world around you.
The best example of AR would be the Snapchat filters and lenses – the ones that make it look like you have a dog’s tongue, squashed face, and more. Another example is the IKEA app that allows you to hold your iPhone and preview how the furniture will look. Interesting, isn’t it?
In order to build AR applications for Apple devices, the company developed ARKit which is nothing but a set of APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) to let the developers build AR apps easily. Now that you have become familiar with the technology, without further ado, let’s learn more about Apple’s upcoming AR product – Apple Glasses.
What will they look like?
AR-enabled iGlasses are no more swaddled in mystery. There’s a word on the spread that the glasses may give off a Clark Kent-like vibe, but the prototypes reportedly look like a pair of plastic frames.
Another interesting rumor tells that Apple might introduce a Steve Jobs version of Apple Glasses that will most likely be called ‘Steve Jobs Heritage Edition’. The design of the glasses may be similar to the iconic round, rimless specs Jobs used to wear. For all I know right now, this may be a marketing stunt pulled by the company.
Anyway, I have learned via some sources that there is a lidar scanner on the right side, to scan your surroundings to overlay 3D images in a realistic manner. However, there are no plans to make the first run of Apple Glass in tinted varieties. So, if prescription sunglasses are your thing, you might have to wait even longer.
Features of Apple AR Glasses: What to expect?
- Apple smart glasses will reportedly have a holographic display that will show anything from texts to emails, maps, games in the wearer’s field of vision.
- There may be a fully separate App Store for these as well as a special operating system, likely to be called glassOS.
- There are a few patents that suggest the glasses might have an optical vision correction system that may eliminate the need for prescription lenses. Nothing is certain, but we never know what might we get!
- Apple smart glasses may address everything from farsightedness to nearsightedness to astigmatism, and more.
- The glasses may have a system wherein the users can touch an option in their virtual world and allow them to take control.
- Perhaps, an extended battery life!
Fitting with Apple’s custom and the prices offered by the current competitors, it was expected that Apple’s AR Glasses would be set to have a high price. However, the estimated Apple Glasses price is $499 (roughly AU$765 / £410). Quite surprising, isn’t it?
Such affordable rates are, perhaps, possible due to the fact that there is no onboard computer required – the iPhone will handle everything. For any additional prescriptions that the optical system has to account for, there may be additional charges. These specs are still cheaper than Microsoft’s Hololens 2, which costs a whopping $3500. (Just in case, you were wondering the product is costly!)
When will the Apple Glasses roll out? This is still a mystery! Kuo, an expert Apple leaker, tweeted that he believes the smart glasses won’t be launched before 2022. However, another expert Jon Prosser, who has had many correct predictions, tweeted that the AR smart glasses might arrive anytime between March-June 2021.
However, there has also been some news around the launch date in 2023. So, long story short, nobody really knows when the Apple AR Glasses will be launched, but it will be within the next 2 years. What do you think?
Apple’s most awaited AR Glasses may soon be available in the market. Until then, you can watch this Apple Glasses video for some insights.
Whether it’s real or not, but it will be a game-changer in the market. What do you think? Are you excited about Apple AR glasses? What features do you expect? Shoot down your comments. I’d love to know!