Apple’s first-gen mixed reality headset is yet to see the light of day, but the company is said to be already working on a second-generation model that will be more affordable than the upcoming device. By all accounts, Apple’s first-generation AR/VR headset might debut in the coming months. While the company has yet to confirm whether it has such a device in the pipeline, that isn’t stopping the rumor mills from churning out reports every few days. The persistent leaks have revealed some interesting aspects of the upcoming device, although most of the critical specifications and features are still under wraps.
In terms of the launch time frame, a report from Haitong International Securities analyst Jeff Pu in April claimed that the device might be launched before the end of this year. However, a newer report suggests that it has been delayed and will only be available in Jan. 2023. Pu also claimed that Apple plans to sell between one and 1.5 million units of the new device in its first year. If that assertion is correct, the device will likely be a mass-market product and not just meant to be a demo piece for developers and early adopters. Still, it’s likely to be priced relatively high for most consumers, something Apple is reportedly trying to rectify with its second-gen offering.
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According to a recent blog post by TF International Securities analyst and prolific Apple tipster Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple has been holding discussions with its suppliers about its second-generation AR/VR headset. The device is said to come in two different variants, including one that will be more affordable than the first-gen model. The other one will reportedly be a direct upgrade to the first-gen model and will offer more premium hardware. But unfortunately, it will also likely be priced at a premium.
Kuo further revealed that the second-gen AR/VR headset might launch in the first half of 2025, while the component suppliers will start shipping in the second half of 2024. There’s no more new information about the devices, including any of their tech specs, but most users will welcome a cheaper version of Apple’s ultra-expensive AR/VR headset. According to reports, the first-generation model might be priced around a whopping $3,000, making it out-of-reach for most potential buyers.
Meanwhile, Kuo didn’t reveal anything about the possible differences between the two second-gen models and the reason why one of them will be more affordable than the other. However, if the report is accurate, it would suggest that Apple would try and replicate its iPhone strategy with its AR/VR headset, whereby the top-end model will be sold at a premium, while the more affordable base model will come with cheaper hardware.