Apple is very close to introducing its first virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) headset. With the aim of revolutionizing the industry with the launch of Reality Pro (possible name of the glasses), the equipment has already had hardware, price range and design details revealed in other leaks, but only now does more solid information about functions and software.
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According to information from Bloomberg, the headset has been in development for the last seven years by a group of more than a thousand people. Below you discover the news revealed by the leak.
Eye and hand tracking
One of the great attractions of the device will be the precise tracking of eyes by internal cameras and hand gestures by several external sensors, allowing to identify the environment and differentiate it from the body thanks to the degree of depth.
Combining these features, users will control the software by navigating with their eyes to select a button and using their hands for other actions. One of the examples given is the pinch gesture made by the thumb and index finger to click on the selected item.
So Reality Pro will be closer to Microsoft HoloLens (which was just canceled with the layoff of 11,000 employees, including the entire VR and AR team) than competitors like Meta Quest Pro and cheaper alternatives that rely entirely on controllers. physical to work.
Digital Crown for switching between AR and VR
As expected, using the Digital Crown in Reality Pro will work to switch between augmented reality and virtual reality modes. The Digital Crown is a circular button used to navigate the Apple Watch interface and to adjust the AirPods Max’s volume and noise canceling modes.
On the Apple headset, the button can be slid to one side to display graphics projected over the real environment (augmented reality), and to the other to display the immersive virtual environment (virtual reality).
External battery connected by wire
Contrary to what everyone expected, Reality Pro may not arrive as a completely wireless device. The headset is said to use a wired external battery the size of almost two iPhone 14 Pro Max’s on top of each other, nearly 15 cm high and 1.5 cm thick.
The battery will be fan-cooled to prevent any possibility of overheating and will be connected via a cable to the headset. Each full charge will give Reality Pro approximately two hours of use.
Some Reality Pro prototypes were developed with an integrated battery — which would increase the chances of overheating and its weight — and a USB-C connector.
Canvas for Macs in Virtual Reality
It is still revealed that Apple should allow users to view the screen of Mac computers in virtual reality, controlling the equipment by keyboard, trackpad and physical mouse.
The company is developing technology to enable writing over the air, but for now users will have to rely on voice commands to dictate sentences or use their iPhone, iPad or Mac to write on the device.
Apps, game engine and VR cinema experience
Apps like Safari, Photos, Mail, Messages, App Store, Apple TV and others will be factory installed in Reality Pro in new edition for virtual and augmented reality.
Apple is developing a proprietary graphics engine to optimize game graphics in virtual reality.
It is also said that the experience of watching videos will be a major highlight of the headset, allowing users to take advantage of the virtual environment to watch movies and series in different environments such as desert and space. The company may announce partnerships with Disney and Dolby for exclusive content.
FaceTime with Reality Pro
For video calls in virtual reality, Apple can go against the grain of competitors and bet on a realistic version of the user’s face and body with legs, different from the amputee avatars of Meta
It was also expected that Apple would implement virtual avatars using the popular Memojis, something that seems not to happen.
Aluminum body and external screen
It is still revealed that Apple works on Reality Pro with a body made of aluminum, glass (probably for external protection) and pads for contact with the face in the eye area.
Finally, the Bloomberg article reveals that the equipment will have an external screen facing other people and that it will be able to show the user’s eyes (minimally strange). The headset will still feature speakers on the sides of the body and a strap to keep the device fixed on the head.
Price, listing and availability
Apple Reality Pro is expected to launch during the first half of this year, but it is still uncertain whether the company will present the equipment during its annual event between March and April or leave it to announce it during WWDC 2023, which is expected to take place in June. .
Reality Pro can cost approximately US$ 3 thousand, just over R$ 15 thousand in conversion. The official value is still unknown.
Even more details of Apple’s augmented and virtual reality headset are expected to emerge in the coming months as we get closer to their official announcement.
Source: Bloomberg, via 9to5Mac