Apple’s Reality Pro headset is reportedly set for an official unveiling at WWDC in June, and this announcement is seen as the “last hope” for the AR/VR headset market, according to a new investor note from TF Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
AR/VR market hangs in the balance as Apple prepares to unveil Reality Pro headset
In a new note, Kuo outlines that both Sony and Meta have struggled to gain widespread adoption with their respective AR and VR headset products, and Pico, China’s largest AR/VR headset brand, saw its shipments for 2022 come in 40% lower than initially expected.
With these data points in mind, Kuo predicts that the future of the AR/VR headset market rests solely in the hands of Apple’s Reality Pro headset. The market might currently be overestimating the impact that AR and VR headset devices will have on key component suppliers over the next few years, particularly in the optical-related.
Apple’s first Reality Pro headset is expected to be an ultra-premium product priced at around $3,000. It will feature top-of-the-line specifications, including an “innovative three-display configuration” with two 4K Micro-LED panels. Apple is also currently working on a more affordable headset product, but it’s not expected to be ready for mass production until at least 2025.
Despite the impressive specifications, there is a lot of doubt surrounding Apple’s headset product. Even internally at Apple, there has reportedly been strife as to whether Apple should ship this version of the product. Apple CEO Tim Cook and COO Jeff Williams have reportedly pushed for releasing this device, even though it’s not as well-rounded as designers and engineers would like it to be.
The AR/VR headset market has had a bumpy road to success. Many companies have tried and failed to create a device that captures the public’s imagination. Sony’s PlayStation VR2 headset has reportedly had its 2023 production plan slashed by 20%, while Meta’s Quest Pro has only shipped 300,000 units in its product lifecycle.
Apple’s announcement event is likely to be the last hope for convincing investors that the AR/MR headset device could have a chance to be the next star product in consumer electronics. It’s clear that the market is hungry for a breakthrough in this area, but it remains to be seen whether Apple’s headset will deliver.
If Apple’s Reality Pro headset is a success, it could have a massive impact on the AR/VR headset market. It could open up new opportunities for developers and create a whole new category of consumer electronics. However, if it fails to capture the public’s imagination, it could be the final nail in the coffin for the AR/VR headset market.
The WWDC event in June will be closely watched by investors, analysts, and consumers alike. All eyes will be on Apple as they unveil their latest product, and the success or failure of the Reality Pro headset will determine the future of the AR/VR headset market.