On the morning of May 18th, foreign media Information (Information) released a report today detailing the technical challenges Apple faced in developing its long-rumored AR/VR headset, which is expected to be Released at the end of 2023.

The Information claims that Apple has been secretly working on an “AR head-mounted display” for years that will one day usher in a post-iPhone era. The project struggled to get off the ground and was delayed by various issues with the technology and leadership team.

Apple AR Helmet

Led by former Dolby executive Mike Rockwell, the team often had to enlist assistance from other parts of the company to complete the project. In mid-2017, the team also worked in an office building a few miles from Apple’s headquarters, which it said “helps keep the group invisible from the rest of Apple.”

In early 2018, a member of the Rockwell team asked Apple’s camera hardware engineering group to add a firmware feature that would increase the speed at which AR device lenses capture and reproject images onto the display. Rockwell’s team hopes to include the feature in a prototype headset ahead of an important presentation for 100 of Apple’s top employees. However, members of the AR headset team were told that this thing was not a priority and that his team would have to wait until the iPhone XS was released later that year.

The AR helmet team considered using a replaceable battery that would allow users to wear it for eight hours a day, but ultimately abandoned the idea due to its complexity. As of 2021, the headset’s battery will reportedly last for “a few hours, on par with similar products.”

Last year, a rendering from Information magazine France featured a curved face mask with soft mesh material, a replaceable headband, and dual 8K displays. There may even be a third display, according to display industry consultant Ross Young.

Previously, Bloomberg reporters also mentioned Apple’s problems with the product, from overheating to camera and software hurdles. Separately, some industry sources say the headset will be powered by two chips, with at least one chip being as capable as the M1 Pro.

At present, Apple’s AR products are still a mystery, and there are even rumors that the middle team has been disbanded and reorganized. Apple also, as always, doesn’t mention unreleased products, and maybe we won’t see a finished product release until 2023, or even later.

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