Rumors of Apple creating its own AR glasses have been ongoing for years now and a lot of people just can’t wait for it. Apple has made great strides when it comes to augmented reality with its ARKit with the company often touting its advantages during major conferences. And it appears that among the leaked information that many in the tech world are getting is that the Apple AR glasses will no longer be a rumor but reality soon enough. Based on the leak information, the tech giant’s latest product will be called Apple Glasses which is the same as that of Google Glass. Unfortunately, the latter did not pan out when it was released.
The Cost of Apple AR Glasses
The retail price for Apple AR Glasses is said to be at $499, or about £410 give or take. However, it is believed that the price will go up especially when the user wants to add prescription lenses. The price is quite cheap especially when you stack it against the Hololens 2 by Microsoft.
The Hololens 2 is currently priced at $3,500, but this is because the additional cost is due to the electronic components used to power their product. Apple Glass, on the other hand, will be using the iPhone for all its processes, which means that there will be fewer parts used on the glass compared to Hololens. Basically, the tech here is similar to that of Vuzix Blade glasses where it has a camera already built-in the glasses with the Alexa app in place.
It is said that the Apple augmented reality glasses will be revealed in the latter part of 2020 along with the new iPhone, which many think will be called the iPhone 12.
But with the ongoing pandemic where people are asked to practice social distancing, this reveal could be delayed until March of 2021 or later. It is also possible that the glasses will not be made available to the market until the last months of 2021.
Design and Tech Behind Apple’s AR Glasses
The first prototype was made from plastic but given the company’s reputation, the materials used will be changed on the launch. Aside from the framework of the Apple Glasses, many are interested in how the company created it.
According to resources, the augmented reality glasses will be using LiDAR or light detection and ranging scanner in order to estimate the distance as well as the power needed for AR. The scanner will be installed on the glasses’ right portion which removes the need for any cameras like the ones used in Google’s tech.
What’s great about this product is that it won’t be using any other cameras to enhance the user’s privacy. Also, it will be packaged with wireless chargers and a stand made from plastic.
The data that will be gathered will then be processed using the iPhone that the AR Glasses are connected to as this will reduce the cost since the frames can be made with lighter materials.
A “Starboard” user interface will be installed as well, which allows you to control the glasses with hand movements. For you to start seeing anything using Apple AR glasses, Apple’s QR codes must be scanned first using the glasses and that’s it.
However, Apple is still having a hard time making its augmented reality glasses to function with a tinted lens. Although this doesn’t mean that we won’t be able to have one in the future. To get a feel for this tech, Snap’s Spectacles may help. This product is not completely AR, but it shows how this tech will look and feel when used as sunglasses.
Features to Consider
Based on a report by Bloomberg, the Apple AR Glasses is going to deliver information coming from your iPhone to the glasses you are wearing. This newest eyewear from Apple is designed to sync with the user’s iPhone to show their emails, texts, and other apps on the lens.
The tech giant does have plans related to third-party applications and is formulating an app store that will be dedicated to these third parties, just like when downloading apps in their Apple Watch or Apple TV.
Bloomberg has reported that a new iOS will be released after the augmented reality glasses will be released, and it will be referred to as ROS with the “r” referring to reality. This software will be based on the company’s existing iOS but this time, it will be used for their AR wearable. It seems that the new software has Geoff Stahl in its team. Stahl was once Apple’s software manager for its graphics and games.
With regards to its specifications, there is no information yet released. However, many are speculating on it already. One theory is that it will have similar a field of view of 52 degrees with 47 PPI resolution which is similar to that of Hololens 2.
If the company’s goal is to build a true AR solution that will be better than Google Glass, we can expect that their AR glasses will be linked to the iPhone using its own Wi-Fi connectivity.
The iPhone will need a higher bandwidth if it will be syncing with Apple’s AR Glasses since it has to process everything that is coming from the camera on the wearable. Using Bluetooth will not suffice. With regards to battery life, it is expected to have at least three hours in it if the company wants to compete in the market. It is highly likely that customers will be more forgiving when it comes to battery life if Apple can have some form of charging station that will help extend the glasses’ life.
What Customers Wish for the AR Glasses
Customers who are eagerly anticipating the launch of Apple augmented reality glasses are wishing that this wearable product will not be too bulky or heavy to wear. No one will be inclined to wear a geeked-out AR glasses that much.
There are some AR hopefuls that wish that there will be simply a heads-up display. However, since the real AR power lies in its 3D integration, it must be able to run any iOS AR application that is being used in the iPhone through the glasses.
Of course, who doesn’t want to have a wearable tech that can operate for several hours? Customers are wishing that these glasses will have a battery life that will reach up to 8 hours. This may be possible if the user is not using any AR apps most of the time or are simply looking at 2D applications. Although many expect that this won’t be possible in the first-gen wearable’s, the succeeding models may adapt this.
With all the rumors surrounding Apple’s AR Glasses, it only shows that the tech company is serious in delivering one of the best wearable’s in the market yet. Apple has been filing patents with regards to the technology that they are using for their AR wearable which can mean that they are planning on having it in the market as fast as possible.
Ming-Chi Kuo, a well-known KGI analyst, stated that the company’s track record with regards to producing innovative as well as high-quality products for their users is going to propel them to success, particularly with the launching of their AR Glasses.