It’s been a long time since we’ve heard anything regarding Apple glasses. Since 2019, speculation has intensified, with Apple Glass rumours and leaks finally beginning to flow in. Every few months, it seems like we get another large report outlining a probable release date and features. But, so far, we aren’t all sporting Apple-branded smart glasses.
The Apple Glasses are expected to be introduced in 2022, but we may not be able to wear them until 2023 or even longer.
According to a new report, Apple will introduce a high-priced MR headset in 2022, with the AR-focused headset, which we presume to be the Apple Glasses, following in 2023 at the earliest.
So there’s a lot of speculation and disagreement about when or even if we’ll get Apple glasses and whether or not these many speculations are all referring to the same headset.
While you try to wrap your brain around all of that, let’s go over all of the Apple glasses rumours and speculations, as well as Apple’s augmented reality history and why AR specs appeared like the next major move for the tech giant.
There haven’t been any pictures of the actual design revealed, but Apple wants these glasses to be fashionable and approachable. The Apple Watch is a fantastic place to start to see how Apple approaches wearable design subtle but still clearly a piece of technology.
Much of what has been depicted in patents appears to be safety glasses, although these are sample drawings meant to demonstrate the invention rather than the product. Finally, “Apple Glass” could resemble a standard set of glasses, but there is no way of confirming until something more formal spills up.
It is not easy to create a tech product that people want to put on their faces. Most purchasing decisions are influenced by the style, colour, and even lens shape, yet Apple is notorious for a one-size-fits-all strategy for many of its goods.
As reported before, there have been two unique devices throughout the years, one of which is the alleged glasses and the other a VR headset.
Sony may provide half-inch Micro OLED panels with a resolution of 1280×960 for the eyewear. According to sources, the order for the screens is likely to be completed by the first half of 2022.
Patents and the specs
The largest leak on that front has revealed a lot of information. According to rumours, the Apple Glasses will be dubbed Apple Glass and will be capable of showing information on both lenses while being controlled by movements on and in front of the frames.
All processing would ostensibly be performed by a connected iPhone, and Apple Glass would ostensibly lack traditional cameras in favour of a LiDAR scanner to support AR experiences. In early 2021, a rumour reaffirmed that LiDAR would be included in Apple Glass, along with six lenses; however, it was unclear whether this related to layered glass or camera lenses.
There will be no sunglasses version because the display doesn’t operate with tinted lenses, viewers won’t be able to see the lenses are displaying anything, and the frame – at least in a prototype – is made of plastic.
A slew of Apple patents has also surfaced recently, detailing how lenses could be used to display images on a user’s eye and how a touchscreen surface could be utilized as a controller.
One patent describes glasses with changeable opacity, which may help add focus to a movie, for example, or improve sight on a bright day.
Previous reports on Apple’s headset by The Information indicate a more pared-down control scheme than the complicated and big gaming controller-like accessories utilized by many VR headsets right now. Apple’s headset should use hand tracking, like many VR and AR headsets already do. However, Apple would very certainly want some kind of controller-type device for inputs. In many ways, overcoming the control/input difficulty appears to be one of the more difficult challenges.
The Apple Watch’s motion control features and touch screen may not be sufficient for the deeper interactions required by an Apple headset. Perhaps iPhones could be paired and used as controls as well!
Processing and battery
Wireless signals, intelligent displays, microphones, fast CPUs, and LiDAR all add to a device that requires a large battery. If Apple wants a device that everyone likes to wear, it must look attractive and perform well. A huge battery and a processor aren’t going to cut it, so Apple will need to balance.
Processing power is one area where Apple can save cash. Smart glasses, like the first-generation Apple Watch, may rely on the iPhone for all needs and serve just as a display for that information.
Apple will drastically reduce local processing by handing information from the phone to the glasses, keeping only the display and sensors to worry about.
Apple’s AirPods are an excellent example of a little device with long battery life. Even though the AirPods Pro is small, it may be used for several hours with ANC. If the prototype versions are “sleek,” as Prosser claims, Apple may have already addressed their design issues with battery life.
The glasses will need to fulfil the client as both a piece of technology and fashion, but they will also need to fulfil the third role for many people who work as actual glasses.
The Apple Glasses are now priced at $499, plus prescription expenses, according to rumours. That may appear to be a modest price, especially when competing for augmented reality headsets such as the Microsoft Hololens 2.
The Hololens 2 costs $3,500, including all of the electronics required to run the AR experience, which is incorporated inside the headgear.
Apple Glass, on the other hand, will rely on a companion iPhone for processing, resulting in substantially fewer parts and complexity than Hololens. It will function similarly to the Vuzix Blade smart glasses, including a built-in camera and Alexa integration.
Nonetheless, the Vuzix Blade sells at $799. Apple’s entry point is substantially more affordable, costing the same as some of the company’s highest-specced smartwatches.