It’s no surprise that Apple’s mixed reality headset didn’t make an appearance at Apple’s WWDC 2022 event. Credible sources have warned us that the hardware won’t appear this month – or even this year, for that matter – but the absence of any information regarding a development SDK was telling enough.
It has been whispered that Apple’s “realityOS” efforts are hitting a few hurdles, both internally and externally. The latest news points to a potential delay in the launch of its first augmented reality headset, pushing the date back to sometime in the second quarter of 2023, leaving many developers waiting for more news on the how to prepare for his arrival.
We expected, or at least hoped, that Apple would have a few words to say about its augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) efforts during its WWDC keynote. There have even been rumors that Apple is revealing some tools which, while intended for the iPhone and iPad, also pave the way for its mixed reality headset. Unfortunately, there was no mention of any of these technologies, leaving some to wonder where the company’s efforts stand these days.
Of course, Apple might have such software ready internally, but it may have decided not to reveal it until its hardware is ready. This material is far from being in this state and could even be further delayed.
According to the famous analyst Ming-chi Kuo, Apple’s mixed reality headset might not be ready to launch until July at the latestwhich pushes the company’s schedule back by one quarter.
1. EVT starting from 3Q22.
2. Media event on Jan 2023.
3. Delivery of development toolkit within 2–4 weeks after the event.
4. Starting pre-order in 2Q23.
5. Hitting store shelves before WWDC 2023.
— 郭明錤 (Ming-Chi Kuo) (@mingchikuo) June 7, 2022
A launch in the first quarter of 2023?
Kuo cites Shanghai’s recent COVID-19 containment measures as the main cause for the alleged delay. These measures have affected the production capacities of many suppliers, including those that Apple needs to manufacture this headset. Thus, contrary to the “consensus” of market analysts, the first “Apple View” headphones may not be ready for a launch in the first quarter of 2023.
It’s likely that Apple will officially announce the headset’s existence in January 2023, with development SDKs to follow a month after the event. Kuo predicts that pre-orders will begin in Q2 and that the helmet itself will be available for direct purchase just shortly before the start of WWDC next year. All of these predictions, however, are based on a timeline where Technical Verification Testing (EVT) will begin within the next three to four months.
Until then, don’t expect Apple to give away any hints of the headset’s existence, except for maybe a few tidbits of information here and there.