Apple has placed its mixed reality project on hold as it seeks to address spiralling cost concerns with a cheaper AR headset.
That’s the claim being made in a new report over on The Information. It’s claimed that Apple is worried by the fact that its ambitious mixed reality headset is on course to cost upwards of $3,000 as things stand.
That’s around £2,430 if we’re going by a direct conversion, although Apple’s current US-weighted pricing approach would likely pitch that closer to a like-for-like £3,000. It’s likely to be very expensive, either way you cut it.
With this in mind, the company is said to have placed development of its initial AR headset effort on indefinite hold for now, and is focusing instead on the development of a cheaper headset, which was already underway at Apple HQ.
Apparently, Apple is looking to price its augmented reality debut at somewhere around the price of an iPhone, which ranges from £849 for the entry-model iPhone 14 to £1,749 for a top-spec iPhone 14 Pro Max.
In order to hit such a price point, which would likely be around half that of its initial AR/VR vision, Apple’s engineers are said to be looking to cheaper components. This could include lower resolution displays, fewer sensors, and less capable processors, all wrapped up in a less premium design. It’s even being discussed that the mixed reality headset could avoid using the H2 chip, which enables low latency audio.
Apple’s first mixed reality headset has reportedly been delayed several times, slipping from an initial launch target of this year to 2025.