Today, we’re going to be talking about something we’ve mentioned quite a bit here at AppleToolBox: The Apple Headset, commonly referred to as Apple Glass. The reason we’re discussing this subject today is that, while there have been rumors for an Apple Headset for a several years now, things are starting to become more concrete for the first time.
In this article, we’re going to cover why the Apple Headset might come in 2023, why it might not, and why this tech has been the obsession of Apple fans for several years now.
- What is the Apple Headset?
- Will the Apple Headset come out in 2023?
- If the Apple Headset isn’t coming out this year, then when?
- Why the Apple Headset is a big deal
- What are your thoughts on a potential Apple Headset?
What is the Apple Headset?
Before we dive too deep into things, let’s talk about what the Apple Headset is. After all, this might be the first time that a lot of you are hearing about this device.
For those that don’t know, the Apple Headset, or Apple Glass, is a rumored device from Apple. That means that, for all intents and purposes, this product does not exist. We have rumors, clues, and a pretty solid idea that Apple is working on this device, but there hasn’t been any announcement or official confirmation.
The concept of Apple Glass is that it will be a mixed-reality headset. So you’ll put this headset on, and it’ll cover your eyes, kind of like a traditional VR headset. However, it’ll still allow you to see your environment; you won’t be in a totally digital setting when you put the headset on.
Instead, you’ll see digital elements placed over what you’re looking at and tracked to your environment. In all honesty, this is a pretty difficult concept to explain if you haven’t seen it before. So if you have an iPhone, go ahead and download the Measure app from Apple.
Open the app, and make sure you have the Measure tab at the bottom of the screen selected. Then, point the dot in the middle of the screen at something in your vicinity and tap your screen. Then point it elsewhere and tap there.
As you’ll see, the software is interacting with your physical space. That is what the Apple Headset will do. Imagine having access to this measure app at all times, as well as map directions that overlay on your environment, text message popping up in your peripheral, and so on.
There is a lot of hype for this device because, if successful, it has the potential to completely change the face of computing. But more on that later in this post!
Will the Apple Headset come out in 2023?
For now, let’s focus on whether or not the Apple Headset is coming out any time soon. Fortunately, we do have some solid reasons to believe that 2023 will be the year of Apple Glass. Here is that info now!
Rumors suggest that parts for the Apple Headset are already in production
The first big rumor pointing to the Apple Headset coming out this year is tied to production. Specifically, there have been rumors suggesting that lenses are being produced for Apple Glass.
First, to be clear, these rumors could be untrue. Let’s get that out of the way. That also goes for all of the rumors we’re covering in this post – they’re just that, rumors.
Secondly, let’s assume that this is true. What are the implications?
The most obvious is that Apple Glass is coming out this year. After all, what else could lens production mean?
Well, it could also mean that these are lenses for a prototype. Apple might just be upping its testing and moving onto new kinds of hardware. So even if these rumors are true, they don’t necessarily mean that Apple Glass is coming out this year. Just that it’s coming out soon.
We might see an announcement as soon as Spring 2023
Another report has suggested that we’re going to get an announcement for an Apple Headset as soon as Spring of 2023. For those that are keeping track, that’s just a few months away.
Again, though, you should probably temper your expectations. An announcement doesn’t necessarily mean that a product launch is coming soon. It might just mean that Apple is far along enough in development to let the public know about this device. But that doesn’t mean the product is ready to be sold.
Now, that having been said, I would be absolutely thrilled to see an announcement for Apple Glass in a few months. Just seeing what Apple is doing with this technology, the kinds of workflows it’s developed, and getting an idea of how capable it is would all be incredible. So hopefully, this rumor is true.
The rumors for the Apple Headset have been around for several years now
The last reason to expect an Apple Headset this year is that we have been seeing rumors like this for several years now. The earliest rumors surrounding Apple Glass that I can remember date back to 2019, and it’s very likely that they go back much farther.
Many of these rumors have pointed to 2023 being the year that Apple Glass is released, and there have been so many rumors that it seems inevitable that the release date is closing in.
Essentially, where there is smoke there is fire, and we’ve seen a lot of Apple Headset smoke as of late.
If the Apple Headset isn’t coming out this year, then when?
Alright, so now that we’ve covered why you might see an Apple Headset in 2023, let’s cover why you might not. I’ll be honest, I keep going back and forth on this myself. In some respects, it seems like we really are on the cusp of a product reveal. But on the other hand, it’s felt that way for a while now. So let’s look at why we might want to keep our expectations low moving forward.
The technology isn’t there yet
For starters, the technology just isn’t there yet. Well, kind of.
When we’re talking about a true headset, as in a big bulky thing you wear on your head, that tech is actually getting pretty close to being public-ready. A lightweight pair of mixed-reality glasses, however – well, we aren’t even close to that kind of tech just yet.
And the thing to be aware of with Apple is that it’s not a company that releases something before it’s ready. Famously, Apple is last to the party, coming out with products and features a few years after the rest of the industry has released them.
That’s because Apple values taking its time with things and making them so perfect that hardly anyone else can compete. They’re rarely first, but usually the best. And it might just be the case that the technology isn’t good enough for anyone to be the best right now.
The market is almost ready for an iPhone replacement, but not quite
Another reason that an Apple Headset might not be coming in 2023 is that the market isn’t ready for it. While some rumors suggest that Apple Glass will be a companion device to the iPhone, others suggest that it’ll be a replacement.
And in some ways, I do see that the market is ready for an iPhone replacement. People are upgrading their phones less often, wondering why each new iPhone feels very similar to the last, and generally speaking, new and exciting smartphone features have started to halt.
But truth be told, I think people are just beginning to get bored with the iPhone. I think there is probably another year or two before people are itching for something new. There’s a good chance that if Apple Glass were to come out in 2023, the average user wouldn’t clamor for it. But in 2025 or 2026m who knows?
We’ll get an Apple Headset, but not Apple Glass
This is actually a rumor that has been going around over the last weeks. That’s that the Apple Headset is coming, but Apple Glass is not. And I’ll be honest, this is not something that I expected, but it does make a lot of sense.
The idea here is that a bulky, VR-like headset will come out this year. It’ll probably be a bit uncomfortable, have poor battery life or require a continuous power supply to function.
While that would be awesome for tech-savvy fans of Apple, it doesn’t really make sense for the average user. I can see myself buying that, but not my dad or really even my friends.
Personally, I think this would be a good compromise. It reminds me of the Apple Watch launch, where a Series 0 watch was released at a ridiculous price. Lots of techies were excited for it, but it took a few years for the price to go down, the product to improve, and the OS to catch up before the average user was grabbing an Apple Watch. It was essentially a proof that Apple had the device, even if it wasn’t quite ready to be in everyone’s hands.
There hasn’t been a “big rumor”
Lastly, we might not get an Apple Headset this year because, simply put, there hasn’t been a “big rumor”. By that I mean there hasn’t been that compelling confirmation, that overwhelming hype, that feeling in the air that yes, 2023 is the year for Apple Glass.
From what I understand, this is something that preceded the Apple Watch and the original iPhone. People may not have known exactly what was coming, but they did know that something big was in the works, and that the time for it to be released was nigh.
I don’t really see that happening at the moment. Most people are pretty skeptical about the release date for Apple Glass. There is a lot of uncertainty and conflicting information coming out, which indicates that we’re getting close, but not necessarily that we’re on the cusp of a launch.
Why the Apple Headset is a big deal
Alright, so now that we’ve covered why the Apple Headset is probably coming out this year (and why it might not be), let’s cap things off by discussing why it’s a big deal.
Of course, if you’re an Apple fan, then nearly any major product release from Apple is a big deal. But specifically, the idea of an Apple Glass product represents a potential turning point in computing. Here’s why.
It’ll probably be priced similarly to the iPhone
For starters, the Apple Headset that we’re looking forward to in just a few months is rumored to start at a similar price to the iPhone. That means it’ll be relatively accessible, even to the average user.
Other competing products, like the Meta Quest Pro, start around $1,500. That’s the same price as a new computer.
So having a headset from Apple that anyone can (relatively) afford means that this device has the potential to end up in a lot of hands. Like AirPods or the Apple Watch, it could wind up being an entirely new product category for Apple that everyday users can enjoy.
It has the potential to replace all of your devices
Perhaps that biggest reason that an Apple Headset would be a major release is that it can potentially replace all of your devices. In fact, I’m in the camp of users expecting that, with almost complete certainty, it will.
Let’s take a step back. Right now, Apple’s primary product categories are a smart watch, a smart phone, a smart tablet, and a computer. And virtually all of these devices have similar, integrated operating systems. The main differentiators between them are their size and their processing power.
Well, imagine you had a single device that could display screens at any size you want, as many as you want, and all with equal processing power. That’s essentially what Apple Glass can be capable of.
Now, I’m not saying that this is what Apple Glass will do when at launch, nor am I even saying that this is the long-term plan for this device. However, mixed-reality computing has the potential to break down the barriers between us and our software, combining software with our environment intuitively.
This represents the first step towards this style of computing, in the same way that the iPhone represented the first step in truly mobile computing.
The Apple Headset will bring new computing opportunities
Not only do is it anticipated that the Apple Headset could combine the computing features of most currently available Apple devices, but it’s also expected that new types of computing will be made available.
For instance, the kinds of peripherals we use, the style of interfaces that we’ve grown accustomed to, these could all change in a mixed-reality setting. They could also stay the same, but there’s no guarantee that this will be the most optimal route to take long-term.
Again, similarly to how computing changed as a result of smartphones dominating the tech market, a powerful, affordable headset could change the current paradigm of computing.
What are your thoughts on a potential Apple Headset?
And that’s it! That’s everything we know (and don’t know) about the potential Apple Headset. In case you couldn’t tell, I’m pretty excited by the prospect of this product! But let me know what your thoughts are in the comments below.
For more insights, news, and guides on all things Apple, check out the rest of the AppleToolBox blog.
See you next time!