Apple glasses: A “dream for game developers” and damn expensive

Apple glasses: A “dream for game developers” and damn expensive

Apple leaker Mark Gurman believes Apple’s VR-AR glasses will be heavily targeted at game studios – and cost a chunk of money.

Last week, Gurman published information that Apple’s VR-AR glasses will most likely be delayed until 2023. A release at the end of 2022 is not yet completely ruled out, but unlikely: Apple’s developers struggled with the heat development of the high-end tech glasses. It is especially important for face computers to remain cool – otherwise, they will be unusable by summer at the latest.

Apple glasses more expensive than $2,000?

In his current newsletter, Gurman reports on internal talks at Apple about a glasses price of more than 2,000 US dollars. The reason for the high price is the high-end hardware developed by Apple, as well as the long research and development time – Apple is working on XR glasses technology for at least eight years until the release.

Gurman cites a dual processor on par with the power of an M1 Pro, 8K resolution, support for corrective lenses for refractive errors, and “advanced audio technology” as tech highlights of the glasses. The latter item could be Apple’s proprietary surround sound technology for AirPods, which will be unveiled as early as 2020.

Positioning it as a “dream for game developers”

Interestingly, Gurman assumes Apple will market the glasses with a focus on game studios. Apple’s VR-AR glasses will be positioned as a “dream for game developers” according to Gurman’s assessment.

That could mean two things: One, that the glasses are good for VR / AR games and designed to be developer-friendly, such as supporting OpenXR. Or that game studios use the tech glasses as a game development tool when designing their 3D worlds.

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The latter would fit better with the high price: A pair of gamer glasses for $2,000 is only likely to reach a niche audience, even with the Apple logo emblazoned on them.

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Besides gaming, the focus should be on communication and, in the case of virtual reality, a telepresence application with Animojis that offers an experience comparable to Facetime. Media streaming could also play a role, for which Apple, according to Gurman, is searching for appropriate partners. Apple bought the XR streaming company NextVR in May 2020.

When it comes to the name, Gurman taps “Apple Vision” after the process of elimination, also because this specifies a long-term orientation. Even Apple’s high-end glasses will still be part of the early phase of the technology and thus form the basis for long-term development.

Gurman’s other name suggestions such as Apple Reality (too dystopian), Sight (too medical), Lens (too close to Hololens), Goggles (too generic), Apple XR etc. (too technical) I think are less likely.

Sources: Bloomberg