Magic Leap’s AR headsets will start at around $1,000

Magic Leap is spilling more and more of its secrets as it gets nearer to releasing its first mixed reality headset this year. At Recode's annual Code Media conference, Magic Leap chief Rony Abovitz has revealed the company's plans to release not one,…
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Magic Leap’s cheapest headsets will cost as much as a high-end phone, says CEO

Magic Leap is planning multiple editions of its augmented reality glasses for different levels of consumers and professionals, with the cheapest starting at the price of a “higher-end mobile phone to higher-end tablet,” says company president and CEO Rony Abovitz. “I think we’re trying to establish certain tiers — we’re not going to be a single-product company over time,” Abovitz told an audience during an interview at Recode’s Code Media conference today.

Abovitz says the Magic Leap One, a “creator edition” headset that’s supposed to be coming out this year, falls somewhere in the middle of Magic Leap’s price range. “We will have a product line in that price point probably for the company’s history, and we’ll probably have some above…

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Apple patents way to fix VR headsets’ worst problem

Bulky virtual reality headsets may soon look like retro relics if Apple’s designers have their way. Details of a new patent from Apple reveal the company is investigating different ways to reduce the size of bulky augmented reality and virtual reality headsets. The patents specifically mentions a tech that its rivals aren’t using, which could […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)

Cult of Mac

Apple Patents Optical System for Use in Both VR and AR Headsets

Apple has invented an optical system for use on both virtual and augmented reality devices, a recent patent application shows.

The patent application, “Optical System for Head-Mounted Display,” was published by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office on Feb. 8. Among other things, the patent corroborates that Apple is continuing to invest in its development of VR and AR technology.

The Patent

While the application is written in the typically dense and jargon-filled language of patents, is it possible to glean several details about where Apple might be headed.

  • The patent application goes into detail describing an optical system for use in a head-mounted display. This head-mounted device could be used for either virtual or augmented reality purposes — both are mentioned, but the emphasis, interestingly, is being placed on virtual reality.
  • Additionally, Apple notes that long-term use of a head-mounted device can be uncomfortable. The patent also describes its methods for mitigating this issue — namely the use of more efficient lenses that aren’t bulky or heavy.
  • Basically, Apple has invented a system that can display images or other content on a head-mounted device that incorporates more efficient and comfortable-to-wear technology.

Previous Apple AR / VR Rumors

Apple, of course, has long been rumored to be developing an augmented reality headset. Industry and supply chain rumors, analyst predictions and even comments from CEO Tim Cook himself all corroborate this. The launch of ARKit, too, suggests Apple is ready to dive into augmented reality.

More recent rumors point toward a standalone augmented reality device that, one day, could even replace an iPhone. These rumors, citing sources within Apple, hint that the device could sport its own operating system, apps, and even its own App Store.

While there’s no word on a launch date, rumors suggest Apple could have the technology ready by next year. It could possibly hit the market by 2020.

What This Means for You

Of course, the rumor mill has been pushing the narrative that Apple will release an augmented reality headset. But the patent also describes a virtual reality headset.

While AR overlays digital information onto a real-world environment, VR headsets — which are already on the market — envelop the user in a purely digital world.

The patent doesn’t confirm anything, but it could hint that Apple is also working on a VR headset. Perhaps its own competitor to Google Cardboard or Oculus, used for gaming and viewing movies and other virtual content.

An Apple VR and AR device wouldn’t be mutually exclusive, either. It’s certainly possible that Apple could unveil its own VR headset while continuing to develop a groundbreaking AR device. The fact that this recent patent application applies to both technologies may be our first indication that this could be the case.

Of course, since it is just a patent application, there’s no guarantee if we’ll ever see the tech described hit the market. So take these rumors with a grain of salt.

iDrop News

Lenovo’s VR Classroom kits come with Daydream headsets

Lenovo will soon release its VR Classroom setup, which will let teachers guide their students through virtual field trips. Each kit comes with the first standalone Daydream VR headset, Lenovo's Mirage Solo with Daydream, which arrives preloaded with…
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