Apple’s XR headset might exceed the capabilities suggested in early reports, offering gaming, fitness, and work to become an all-in-one solution for many needs.
According to a recent report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple’s XR device won’t target one particular use case. Instead, it will cover a wide variety of purposes, helped in part by the ability to run hundreds of thousands of iPad apps in mixed reality .
Gurman points out that Apple hasn’t found the “killer app” for VR or XR and is taking a “scattershot” approach to broaden the appeal of this new product to attract a larger group of customers. That worked with the Apple Watch, which wasn’t originally such a health-focused device.
Apple Reality Pro: A consumer headset
The rumored $3,000 price will limit consumer use to a small group of enthusiasts with generous budgets for new technology. However, creating demand is an important step, and Apple might aim to build interest in future products.
Gaming continues to grow at a rapid pace. Apple will tap into that, reportedly placing an unexpectedly large focus on gaming . Gurman said Apple has been working with developers for months. Top-tier games will be available for the XR headset .
Apple Fitness is an intriguing option for customers who own an Apple Watch. Apple would certainly expand this to its XR headset. Supernatural is hugely popular on the Meta Quest 2 .
Gurman mentioned a new wellness app for Apple’s headset would offer meditation, with immersive visuals, soothing sounds, and calming voices to aid relaxation, adding a health focus and a balance to the workout solution.
Apple’s Reality Pro is said to feature two crisp 4K displays, and Gurman suggests the headset could appeal to sports fans as a way to get closer to the action with live games in VR. Meta is already delivering live sports for its Quest headset . Video streaming from Apple TV+ is likely as well.
Apple Reality Pro: A productivity headset
As a head-mounted display, the XR headset will undoubtedly be able to connect to a Mac to run apps and access features that require a computer. Previously, Gurman shared that Apple’s XR headset will run iPad apps .
Gurman stated the headset itself would provide several business features. Apple’s equivalent of Meta’s Horizon Workrooms will allow video conferences within the Reality Pro, featuring realistic avatars in virtual spaces . Collaboration might be possible via an XR version of the Freeform app, providing a shared whiteboard across multiple Apple devices.
With eye and hand control, there won’t be a need for controllers, appealing to business users. Connected keyboards and control from other Apple devices will be possible, according to Gurman.
More hardware details
Gurman said Apple’s XR headset would use an external battery pack with an integrated cable. It supposedly has a magnetic connector for easy attachment and locks in with a twist. A separate USB-C port would handle data transfer.
The battery pack is anticipated to power the Reality Pro for just two hours, appearing to be about the same size as an iPhone but thicker. A powerful charger is needed, the same included with a MacBook Pro. Gurman expects Apple to sell additional battery packs so you won’t have to wait for a top-up between uses.
The almost everything headset
Apple’s XR headset might almost be an “everything” device. However, you’ll still need an iPhone or Android phone until Apple AR glasses arrives. You’ll still need a Mac or another computer to handle most productivity apps.
Apple has never been quick to compete with its own devices. Even though Apple described the iPad as a computer several years ago and made it as powerful as many laptops, Apple has limited the operating system, presumably to leave room for a Mac in the office. Tea Reality Pro might have powerful hardware but you’ll still need a full suite of Apple products to get the most benefit.