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Bloomberg: Apple's AR/VR Gaming Headset Plans Altered By Internal Divisions

Makosuke

macrumors 603
Aug 15, 2001
6,293
524
The Cool Part of CA, USA
Unusually, I'm really not sure who's right in this case, because the two visions of the product are essentially entirely different products.

If it's genuinely intended to be a true AR headset, then Ive and Cook are right--having some sort of "reduced capability mode" when not near the base goes against the entire concept of a wearable, especially an AR wearable. It would have made it a bit like early Apple Watches that didn't do much if your phone wasn't nearby, except full functionality would be attached to your house.

Of note in this vision, whatever drives the thing will get better over time, so even if it's not "blows everything out of the water on day 1", it will get progressively more impressive over time.

If, however, this is a gaming VR-first headset with secondary AR capabilities, or intended for business/design AR in a studio/conference room then Rockwell was absolutely right and Ive and Cook made a mistake. In that vision, the "primary" use is that you're playing a game or working on something in your home/office, and you get the bonus of being able to go outside with it if you want.

Not knowing what the actual use-case of the OS associated with this will be, I have no idea which of those two things is closer to what it is or should be. I can say that the former is much more "Apple-like" in concept--a product that is intended to integrate with whatever you're already doing and enhances it rather than taking over as a primary activity.

I think the form factor is also really relevant. If for example it looks like the big ol' VR headset thing in the patent drawing, then Rockwell was right--nobody is going to walk down the street wearing that monstrosity anyway, so you might as well give it extra features when tethered and make it the best gaming/office VR/AR headset ever. If on the other hand it's more like a pair of glasses that you might actually walk out of the house in without feeling like a character in an '80s Cyberpunk movie, then Ive and Cook's vision makes more sense.
 
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paulsydaus

macrumors newbie
Aug 3, 2019
15
12
but requiring all of the processing to be done on the headset will make it thicker than if it was done off device. Your comment doesn’t make sense...

While the idea of a more powerful headset is great, Ive’s approach will have broader appeal. The bulk and awkwardness of VR headsets keep many people from using them. If Apple can make them sleek but still reasonably powerful, it will go a long way towards improving adoption of VR.
 
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Northgrove

macrumors 65816
Aug 3, 2010
1,131
416
Ugh. I'd rather have a powerful hub somewhere in my living room wirelessly streaming the experience than an AR device eating battery life like there's no tomorrow and then not even coming anywhere near similar potential. Sometimes Apple being hell bent on next-gen experiences with barely any hardware at all comes off as misguided. Now it sounds more like an Apple branded competitor to what's already out there. What happened with "Skate to where the puck is going to be"?

Performance may improve over time and evolving hardware, but first impressions are a big deal.
 
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paulsydaus

macrumors newbie
Aug 3, 2019
15
12
Completely agree with this.
But can we be really that surprised that Timmy sided with his buddy Jonny on this?
Tim comes across as not really have the balls to tell Jonny where to go on anything...?
Even with the Mac Pro which is great, why on earth is the headphone port on the back!?
So many dumb design decisions. They really needed someone who’s role was “Userbility” to counter Jonnys obsession with thinness.

Dear Jony, please go away, you have ruined so many Apple products by making them worse performing actual products just so you think they look nicer.
Go away, stay away and shut the F up.

I'd be more than happy with an additional computer unit, say that was attached to your belt or something if it means the headset can be lighter, and perhaps the compute unit can be boosted in time without needing to replace the headset part as well.
 
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richinaus

macrumors 65816
Oct 26, 2014
1,363
1,086
Dear Jony, please go away, you have ruined so many Apple products by making them worse performing actual products just so you think they look nicer.
Go away, stay away and shut the F up.

I'd be more than happy with an additional computer unit, say that was attached to your belt or something if it means the headset can be lighter, and perhaps the compute unit can be boosted in time without needing to replace the headset part as well.

I am sorry to say, but you are clueless about Apple and consumer products(which is all they make).
 
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cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
19,717
20,641
California
Completely agree with this.
But can we be really that surprised that Timmy sided with his buddy Jonny on this?
Tim comes across as not really have the balls to tell Jonny where to go on anything...?
Even with the Mac Pro which is great, why on earth is the headphone port on the back!?
So many dumb design decisions. They really needed someone who’s role was “Userbility” to counter Jonnys obsession with thinness.

Or Tim knows what sells. And he’s right. Nobody is buying devices tethered (wirelessly or not) to devices that plug into a wall. They’d sell like 1000 of them.
 
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HowardEv

macrumors member
Jun 1, 2018
91
29
Medford ma
It'll be a niche product to start with. Simply plugging it into the wall and then using local wireless tech to maintain freedom in the room its used would be a worthy compromise for the best experience. It would still be untethered and keep the cool factor.
Right - freedom *in the room* is what matters, not to wander around the city streets right? I want the same freedom in the room for using Logic. Separate the hot CPU from the display and keyboard.
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Or Tim knows what sells. And he’s right. Nobody is buying devices tethered (wirelessly or not) to devices that plug into a wall. They’d sell like 1000 of them.
The base station shouldn’t have to plug into the wall, it should have a battery and a USB C charging port.
 
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PinkyMacGodess

macrumors 603
Mar 7, 2007
5,104
1,906
Midwest America.
That's why they are not releasing this anytime soon. Even the rumors are saying it is coming in 2022. The tech is just not at that level yet. Google glass didn't work, and Microsoft holo lens ended up only as novelty demo device.

I wanted the Google Glass. But I have an original Sony DataBank. It's a stone age 'e-book'. Yeah, really stone age...
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It is a sketch from a patent, they are not meant to look anything like a finished product.

THANK FORD!!!

That thing looks like it should have warning labels and flags so it doesn't knock people over if the wearer turns their head too quick! :oops::oops::oops:

Oh, and I'm familiar with product development, and beta testing. It's just really awkward looking. It's better than the first one that I saw. And the cardboard one? Yeah, 'caveman style'? But, rock on... Please do tell me how wrong I am in the future, if it makes you feel better. *shrug*

I would still like to get Google Glasses. I flogged a pair of PlayBoy glasses in the 80's. They really looked like goggles. Everyone looked better in them. HAH HAH HAH!!!🤷‍♂️🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️
 
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farewelwilliams

macrumors 68040
Jun 18, 2014
3,661
14,795
Dear Jony, please go away, you have ruined so many Apple products by making them worse performing actual products just so you think they look nicer.
Go away, stay away and shut the F up.

I'd be more than happy with an additional computer unit, say that was attached to your belt or something if it means the headset can be lighter, and perhaps the compute unit can be boosted in time without needing to replace the headset part as well.


i'm guessing you were touching a Jony designed device when you typed that out.
 
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mazz0

macrumors 68020
Mar 23, 2011
2,179
1,525
Leeds, UK
A lot of people saying the wireless hub idea is awful. If it’s portable and battery powered I don’t see the problem, and if it enables a much more high fidelity graphical experience then it sounds great. It sounds like what we’re getting is going to be compromised for style again.
 
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paulsydaus

macrumors newbie
Aug 3, 2019
15
12
Agreed. But one things for sure, neither Ive nor Cook have demonstrated they understand anything about technology, where the puck is going or what users want. That’s why I have very little faith in their decisions. Ives talent is making something look and feel nice. That should be the secondary concern not the first. He has demonstrated no understand of function or how users interact with products. He’s a visual designer. I bet if he was designing chairs they’d be as comfortable as a plank of wood. He was given far too much power and Cook never had the balks to pull him into line on some products that should never have been released like the first generation Apple Pencil.
It’s sad that Apple is a design company, not a technology company these days and that’s mainly due to Ive and his enablers.

Unusually, I'm really not sure who's right in this case, because the two visions of the product are essentially entirely different products.

If it's genuinely intended to be a true AR headset, then Ive and Cook are right--having some sort of "reduced capability mode" when not near the base goes against the entire concept of a wearable, especially an AR wearable. It would have made it a bit like early Apple Watches that didn't do much if your phone wasn't nearby, except full functionality would be attached to your house.

Of note in this vision, whatever drives the thing will get better over time, so even if it's not "blows everything out of the water on day 1", it will get progressively more impressive over time.

If, however, this is a gaming VR-first headset with secondary AR capabilities, or intended for business/design AR in a studio/conference room then Rockwell was absolutely right and Ive and Cook made a mistake. In that vision, the "primary" use is that you're playing a game or working on something in your home/office, and you get the bonus of being able to go outside with it if you want.

Not knowing what the actual use-case of the OS associated with this will be, I have no idea which of those two things is closer to what it is or should be. I can say that the former is much more "Apple-like" in concept--a product that is intended to integrate with whatever you're already doing and enhances it rather than taking over as a primary activity.

I think the form factor is also really relevant. If for example it looks like the big ol' VR headset thing in the patent drawing, then Rockwell was right--nobody is going to walk down the street wearing that monstrosity anyway, so you might as well give it extra features when tethered and make it the best gaming/office VR/AR headset ever. If on the other hand it's more like a pair of glasses that you might actually walk out of the house in without feeling like a character in an '80s Cyberpunk movie, then Ive and Cook's vision makes more sense.
 
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Abazigal

Contributor
Jul 18, 2011
13,534
11,961
Singapore
A lot of people saying the wireless hub idea is awful. If it’s portable and battery powered I don’t see the problem, and if it enables a much more high fidelity graphical experience then it sounds great. It sounds like what we’re getting is going to be compromised for style again.
Agreed. But one things for sure, neither Ive nor Cook have demonstrated they understand anything about technology, where the puck is going or what users want. That’s why I have very little faith in their decisions. Ives talent is making something look and feel nice. That should be the secondary concern not the first. He has demonstrated no understand of function or how users interact with products. He’s a visual designer. I bet if he was designing chairs they’d be as comfortable as a plank of wood. He was given far too much power and Cook never had the balks to pull him into line on some products that should never have been released like the first generation Apple Pencil.
It’s sad that Apple is a design company, not a technology company these days and that’s mainly due to Ive and his enablers.

I will argue that in this case, form would be more important than function.

The lesson Apple has taught time and time again is that users do not want technology for the sake of technology. They want an integrated solution which just works out of the box, and when it comes to something as personal as wearables, how it looks is just as important, if not more, than specs.

After all, the most powerful AR / VR headset is moot if nobody wants to be caught dead in public wearing it.

Form is what will make the difference between an AR headset being used all day (ie: a pair of glasses with all-day battery life that tethers to your phone and you can bring with you anywhere you go without feeling self-conscious) vs a niche product that is used only intermittently throughout the day (ie: a VR headset that can only be used in specific locations and which precludes you from doing anything else while using it).

Function can come later, after you have had mass user adoption.

It's the AirPods argument all over again. It's small (fits into my jean's coin pouch), light and comfortable (no issues leaving them in my ears all day) and has great battery life, and these advantages mean that consumers are likely going to end up using them in way more situations than a bulky set of headphones which while offering better sound quality, are bulkier and more cumbersome to wear.
 
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cmaier

macrumors Core
Jul 25, 2007
19,717
20,641
California
A lot of people saying the wireless hub idea is awful. If it’s portable and battery powered I don’t see the problem, and if it enables a much more high fidelity graphical experience then it sounds great. It sounds like what we’re getting is going to be compromised for style again.
The original article clearly said it is not portable or battery powered.
 
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mazz0

macrumors 68020
Mar 23, 2011
2,179
1,525
Leeds, UK
I will argue that in this case, form would be more important than function.

The lesson Apple has taught time and time again is that users do not want technology for the sake of technology. They want an integrated solution which just works out of the box, and when it comes to something as personal as wearables, how it looks is just as important, if not more, than specs.

After all, the most powerful AR / VR headset is moot if nobody wants to be caught dead in public wearing it.

Form is what will make the difference between an AR headset being used all day (ie: a pair of glasses with all-day battery life that tethers to your phone and you can bring with you anywhere you go without feeling self-conscious) vs a niche product that is used only intermittently throughout the day (ie: a VR headset that can only be used in specific locations and which precludes you from doing anything else while using it).

Function can come later, after you have had mass user adoption.

It's the AirPods argument all over again. It's small (fits into my jean's coin pouch), light and comfortable (no issues leaving them in my ears all day) and has great battery life, and these advantages mean that consumers are likely going to end up using them in way more situations than a bulky set of headphones which while offering better sound quality, are bulkier and more cumbersome to wear.
I don’t really see what any of that has to do with what we said. A separate hardware device powering the headset remotely doesn’t diminish the style or comfort of the headset, and if it’s portable it doesn’t limit where it can be used.
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The original article clearly said it is not portable or battery powered.
Oh yeah, I missed/forgot the word “stationary”. Fair enough then.
 
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Tech198

macrumors P6
Mar 21, 2011
15,296
2,005
Australia, Perth
"The processing capabilities were so advanced—and produced so much heat—that the technology couldn’t be crammed into a sleek headset. "

Just market it as a "head warmer."
 
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Black Belt

macrumors 6502a
Jun 15, 2007
823
476
California
Jobs would’ve settled this in 30 seconds Immediately giving them a better idea and telling then to get on board or get the f out.
 
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Jensend

macrumors regular
Dec 19, 2008
209
236
It likely won’t be a mass market device in either configuration. VR is now going on close to 40 years without mainstream adoption. Perhaps it is still a solution looking for a problem? Certainly there are a few niche places where it makes sense but this is a lot like 3D TVs: initial cool factor but wears off quickly with the requirements needed to enjoy plus limited content.
Oh, come on. Decent VR has only been around for 4 years, with the release of the Vive, and later the Rift with Touch controllers.
 
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