Apple's long-rumored AR headset is reportedly expected in late 2022, and is said to be far more powerful than the iPhone

·2 min read
Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook adjusting his glasses.AP Photo/Ng Han Guan
  • Apple is reportedly years deep into creating the eventual replacement for the iPhone.

  • That replacement is said to be a powerful AR headset that could debut as soon as next year.

  • The latest report says the headset is powered by chips as powerful as those powering the latest MacBook.

Apple's long-rumored AR headset, which is intended to replace the iPhone in the next 10 years, is apparently quite powerful.

That's according to TF Securities Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo's latest analyst note via MacRumors.

He said that the upcoming headset is expected to launch in the final three months of 2022, and could be as powerful as the most recent MacBooks.

Apple updated its MacBook line with its own chips for the first time ever this year, which are named "M1." The upcoming headset's horsepower, Kuo said, is "similar to that of M1 because it has the same level of computing power as M1."

That jump in horsepower over what's available in iPhones is necessary for the headset, he said, because it's doing much more advanced computing. "For example, the AR headset requires at least 6-8 optical modules to simultaneously provide continuous video see-through AR services to users," Kuo's research note said, according to MacRumors.

It's not clear what the headset will look like, but previous rumors point to at least two versions currently in development: Rather than a pair of glasses, the first Apple headset will reportedly more closely resemble the Oculus Quest virtual reality headsets, while a "sleeker" device that more closely resembles sunglasses is reportedly in the works for 2023.

The long-rumored headset is said to be the successor to the iPhone, and acts as the cornerstone of a 10-year plan to replace smartphones with augmented reality headsets. Apple has reportedly been working on some form of so-called augmented-reality eyewear since at least 2015, and the company has yet to officially unveiled any new AR hardware projects. Moreover, Apple is known to shelve projects at various stages of development.

A request for comment went unanswered as of publishing.

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