Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says Apple is not “optimistic” about releasing its AR/VR headset and has delayed mass production, which means it may not be announced at WWDC.
Apple’s upcoming mixed-reality headset was thought to be coming out at its WWDC keynote, which is now set for June 5. But a new detailed tweet from Ming-Chi Kuo makes it hard to tell when it will be released.
Kuo continues, “Apple isn’t very optimistic about how the market will react to the AR/MR headset announcement because of the economic downturn, compromises on some hardware specifications for mass production (like weight), the readiness of the ecosystem and applications, a high selling price (USD 3,000-4,000 or even higher), etc.”
Because Apple isn't very optimistic about the AR/MR headset announcement recreating the astounding "iPhone moment," the mass production schedule for assembly has been pushed back by another 1-2 months to mid-to-late 3Q23. The delay also adds uncertainty to whether the new device…
— 郭明錤 (Ming-Chi Kuo) (@mingchikuo) March 30, 2023
Whether or not the headset is shown off at WWDC in June, Kuo says that “due to the delay in mass production for assembly, the shipment forecast this year is only 200,000 to 300,000 units, which is less than the market consensus of 500,000 units or more.”
People think that Apple’s first headset will look and maybe even be the same size as ski goggles. People think that there are 4K OLED displays in front of each eye and an outside screen that shows the user’s facial expressions.
There will also be more than a dozen cameras and sensors on the outside of the headset. These will record body movement and, again, facial expressions. Apple is likely to put at least one camera in the headset. This camera will focus on the wearer’s eye movement to figure out when steps to save battery power can be taken without distracting the user.
Recent news said that, against the advice of the company’s industrial design team, Apple had decided to release the headset in 2023. Even though there was “huge pressure to ship,” that team wanted to wait until they could make a light headset like Apple Glass.