Kuo: Apple will hold its mixed reality headset event in January

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Renowned analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims that Apple will hold a special event for its mixed reality headset in January.

The analyst says tools for developers will launch “2-4 weeks after the event” and pre-orders will begin in Q2 2023.

Last month, Kuo warned excited Apple fans not to expect the much-anticipated mixed reality headset at this year’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC). Indeed, the headset was a no-show at Apple’s big annual event.

Kuo said at the time that Apple wouldn’t want to prematurely announce the headset as “competitors will immediately kick off copycat projects and happily copy Apple’s excellent ideas, and hit the store shelves before Apple launches in 2023.”

Whether rivals would be in a position to copy Apple’s hardware and OS – and subsequently manufacture enough to launch in the coming months – is questionable. Apple, with all its weight, is said to be struggling from the same chip shortages and other supply chain issues that are impacting the whole industry.

Kuo himself recently highlighted that competitors are expected to be around 2-3 years behind Apple.

“At present, the largest chip supplier of AR/VR headsets is Qualcomm, and its mainstream solution XR2 has a computing power of mobile phone level,” explains Kuo.

Apple’s headset is set to feature a three-display configuration (with two Micro OLED panels and one AMOLED), and more than 10 sensors (including cameras) for advanced environment and gesture detection. It should support a seamless transition between VR and AR.

The company is said to be setting low sales expectations for the first iteration of its headset due to its expected high cost—which is estimated to be around $3,000. Apple is said to only expect to sell around one headset per Apple Store per day.

Kuo expects future growth will be driven by “a more affordable second generation”.

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