2nd June 2023
Apple’s 34th Worldwide Developers Conference will kick off with a keynote event on Monday 5th June. With this year’s event slated as being its “biggest and most exciting yet”, here’s a preview of some of the expected announcements.
The focus of Apple’s WWDC is usually on the underlying software that powers all of Apple’s devices… but this year, the expectation is that a piece of hardware is going to steal the show - the long-awaited unveiling of Apple’s AR/VR play, the ‘Apple Reality Pro’.
The company has reportedly been working on its mixed reality headset for the last eight years and it is thought to be a sleek headset crafted from aluminium, glass and carbon fibre to make it lightweight and easy to wear. It is claimed the headset could feature dual 4K OLED display and will be controlled through eye and gesture tracking, with some reports claiming you’ll be able to do things like type in mid-air.
Apple is often not first into the market with a device (iPad aside), but when it does launch, it tries to do it with a product that beats the rest. That’s why the debut of the Apple Reality Pro will be interesting as there is plenty of competition already out there.
In fact, yesterday Meta announced that its $499 mixed reality Quest Three headset will be arriving later this year and claimed the updated device is “The first mainstream headset with high-res color mixed reality. 40% thinner and more comfortable.” In addition to the headset, Meta announced over 20 new games for the Quest headsets, including Stranger Things VR and a new version of NFL Pro Era.
At a rumoured cost of around $3,000 the Apple Reality Pro isn’t a cheap option compared to other AR/VR devices like Meta’s Quest, so Apple will need to deliver what its consumers have come to expect – a superior quality product.
Aside from the hardware, a lot of focus from the developer community will be on the accompanying software – xrOS. Much of the success of the device will be tied to the apps that it can use and xrOS is promising capabilities such as immersive media consumption and integration with MacOS.
iOS17 is believed to be another significant upgrade on what we have seen before, with Apple focusing on those service areas that they know tie consumers into their products long-term – Health & Payment services - both of which align to the company’s advertising around consumer privacy.
With all signs pointing to the Apple Reality Pro headset finally making an appearance, the 2023 WWDC looks set to be one of the most jam-packed and exciting of recent years.