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Wearables

Apple’s upcoming Mixed Reality headset will be lighter than an iPhone 12: Kuo

By Nadeem Sarwar March 23, 2021, 3:30 pm
Apple MR headset

Apple is reportedly working on a Mixed Reality headset that could come with some impressive hardware and capabilities such as 15 camera modules, advanced eye-tracking technology, and micro-LED displays with an eye-popping 8K resolution. TF International Securities Ming-Chi Kuo recently predicted that despite the aforementioned hardware, the Apple headset could weigh under 200 grams. Now, another research note by Kuo that was accessed by Macrumors and 9to5Mac mentions that the upcoming Mixed Reality headset by Apple could tip the scale at less than 150 grams.

For comparison, the iPhone 12 weighs 164 grams. However, if you compare it against another well-known Mixed Reality headset that is already in the market, the featherweight nature of Apple’s upcoming device becomes apparent. Take for example the Microsoft HoloLens 2 Mixed Reality headset, which tips the scales at 566 grams. Moving over to the world of virtual reality headsets, the Oculus Quest 2 weighs 503 grams.

apple mixed reality headset the information
A drawing by The Information depicting Apple’s upcoming Mixed Reality headset

Apple is reportedly going with lenses made of plastic, instead of glass, to shed weight

To shed weight, Apple is reportedly going with hybrid ultra-short focal length Fresnel lenses that are not only thinner and lighter, but also offer a wider field of view. Additionally, the lenses will be made of plastic, instead of glass, to further cut down on the bulk. And to achieve the light transmission coefficient of glass, Apple will apply a layer of customized material on the lenses.

Apple is reportedly sourcing these lenses from Young Optics and Genius Electronic Optical. However, a majority of lenses will be provided by long-time supplier Largan. Each headset is said to employ as many as six Fresnel lenses, with three lenses stacked on top of each other for each eye. Apple’s Mixed Reality headset will reportedly be priced somewhere around $1,000, much lower than the competition. The company also has AR glasses in the pipeline that will likely debut in 2025, as per Kuo.

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