Tim Cook spoke up about Apple’s work on augmented reality, or augmented reality product, in an interview with the state-run China Daily, where he asked augmented reality fans to wait and see what the company has to offer.
He reads this as a direct hint that the company is working on a type of headset, which has been rumored for years, unless he thought people might be excited about using ARKit apps on their phones.
The interviewer asked Cook what he thinks are the key factors to the success of an augmented reality product. Cook responds that he couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities in the field of augmented reality, even though it is in its infancy.
In the interview, Cook highlights the number of apps that take advantage of ARkit across the App Store, and he said we have 14,000 ARKit apps that provide an AR experience to millions of consumers around the world.
Cook has spoken about augmented reality dozens of times during his tenure as Apple’s CEO and has gone so far as to say he’s a fan of the technology.
He also agreed that augmented reality is a very important part of Apple’s future. When the company announced its AR APIs, Craig Federighi said the technology represented a profound change.
While these comments make it clear that Apple is working in the field. But it made no promises that the company might offer an augmented reality device.
There have been rumors for years that the company is developing augmented reality headset, or a headset that mixes augmented reality and virtual reality.
The device is currently believed to be a standalone unit, with a built-in computer running the headset. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said the headset chip could be as powerful as the one that powers Macs.
Tim Cook is becoming less cautious about Apple’s AR glasses
This week, analyst Jeff Bowe posted a note that Apple’s augmented reality glasses are now in the design development stage.
The analyst expects to announce this product in the second half of 2024. While rumors believe that the mixed reality headset may be announced later this year or early 2023.
Recent reports indicate that the headset is almost ready. Work has been ramping up on its operating system, called Reality OS, and the board of directors tested the hardware last month.
However, Cook’s comment is not necessarily positive evidence that Apple’s headset is close. In March, the company said explicitly that the announcement of the Mac Pro working with its processors was imminent.
And many people were sure that meant we could see him at WWDC in June. But the keynote of the conference went without the company displaying its advanced devices.