Apple’s ‘Reality Pro’ VR Headset: A Monster Device with Advanced Technologies

Apple is rumored to be launching a new virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) headset this spring, according to a report from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. The device, which is said to be called the ‘Reality Pro,’ is expected to be a high-end device packed with advanced technologies. The headset is said to be able to track users’ hands and eyes, allowing for advanced hand tracking and the ability to see your Mac’s display. In addition, the device will be able to switch between VR and AR by twisting a digital crown, similar to what was reported by The Information earlier this month.

The Reality Pro is said to have several external cameras that track users’ hands and sensors within the gadget’s housing that can be used to read users’ eyes, enabling the headset to be used without a handheld controller. According to the report, users will be able to select items onscreen by just looking at them and activate them by pinching their fingers together. This means that the headset will not require external controllers like the Meta’s high-end Quest Pro and Sony’s upcoming PlayStation VR2.

Another major focus of the Reality Pro is collaboration between other headset users. The device will be able to “realistically render a user’s face and full body in virtual reality” during one-on-one FaceTime calls between two people wearing the headset. This will be a significant improvement over current virtual meeting spaces that rely on cartoony avatars. The company is also developing an immersive way to watch videos on a big screen while wearing the headset, which will require AirPods to hear spatial audio. Users will also be able to use the headset to see their Mac’s display in VR but still control it with a mouse and keyboard.

The Reality Pro’s battery will be offloaded to an external pack that will sit in users’ pockets and connect to the device with a cable, similar to the Magic Leap. The pack is said to be roughly the size of two iPhone 14 Pro Maxes stacked on top of each other and will give the headset two hours of juice. However, Gurman reports that Apple has some internal prototypes with a built-in battery.

The Reality Pro is expected to be priced at roughly $3,000, which is double the price of Quest Pro. Despite the high price, Apple is expected to sell only about 1 million headsets in its first year, which is perhaps an indication that this initial device will be out of reach for many customers. The company is also said to be developing a cheaper headset, with a price closer to $1,500.

To recapitulate, Apple’s Reality Pro VR headset sounds like a monster device packed with advanced technologies, including advanced hand tracking, the ability to see your Mac’s display, and even recreating digital versions of users in one-on-one FaceTime conversations. The device also has a major focus on collaboration between other headset users, and an immersive way to watch videos on a big screen while wearing the headset. The device is expected to be launched this spring with a price tag of roughly $3,000.

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