Apple’s AR smartglasses – understanding the issues

“By now, most Apple investors are well aware of the company’s interest in Augmented Reality,” J. M. Manness writes for Seeking Alpha. “ARKit, is a set of tools for developers that allows them to create new AR apps with most of the difficult work done by Apple.”

“The issue with Apple’s current offering is that it only runs on current iOS devices (iPhone & iPads) which are unwieldy and burdensome for any long term use. Everyone knows that the ultimate end of AR display technology is glasses. It is clear that Apple is working on its own version,” Manness writes. “There is a reason why, while there are many glasses currently available or on the edge of availability, no product has hit a home run… The most important thing to understand is that this is a hard problem!

“I have no idea when Apple will release a set of AR glasses, nor any inside information on what they will look like. Nor do I care to engage in frivolous speculation on the ultimate form factor,” Manness writes. “However, I think we can say some things about what to expect. They will be comfortable and attractive. They will need to connect to an iPhone. They will detect eye movements.”

Much more in the full article – recommendedhere.

MacDailyNews Take: When they’re ready for prime time and not a moment sooner. There’s no room for a multi-year “Apple TV” beta tester experiment here.

Someday, hopefully sooner than later, we’ll look back at holding up slabs of metal and glass to access AR as unbelievably quaint. — MacDailyNews, July 28, 2017

Augmented Reality is going to change everything.MacDailyNews, July 21, 2017

The impact of augmented reality cannot be overstated. It will be a paradigm shift larger than the iPhone and the half-assed clones it begat. — MacDailyNews, August 4, 2017

Bernstein: Apple’s ‘smartglasses’ opportunity ‘could be enormous’ – August 25, 2017
Apple working on several prototypes of AR glasses – August 4, 2017
Apple’s next big move: Augmented reality – August 3, 2017
Apple’s rumored new glasses will be an even bigger deal than the iPhone – July 28, 2017
Apple smart glasses are inevitable – July 28, 2017
New app using Apple’s ARKit lets iPhone recreate 16 weeks of painstaking rotoscoping on the fly – July 27, 2017
Gene Munster: Apple Glasses will soon outshine the iPhone – June 28, 2017
Gene Munster: Expect Apple smart glasses in mid-2020 – June 27, 2017
Augmented Reality: Apple’s revolutionary offering leaves Google’s Android woefully behind – June 26, 2017
Apple’s AR is much closer to reality than Google’s – June 26, 2017
UBS: Apple may eventually launch ‘iGlass’ smart glasses – June 20, 2017
IKEA’s forthcoming Augmented Reality furniture app powered by Apple’s ARKit – June 19, 2017
Apple’s single most important WWDC 2017 announcement: ARKit – June 11, 2017
Apple CEO Cook discusses philosophy behind HomePod, ARKit’s potential market impact – June 6, 2017
Overnight, Apple will own the world’s largest augmented reality platform – June 7, 2017
Analysts: Apple’s Corning investment hints at AR glasses and wireless charging tech – May 14, 2017
Apple awards Corning $200 million in first Advanced Manufacturing Fund investment – May 12, 2017
Leaked document details Apple employee eye injuries, hints at Apple AR glasses – April 20, 2017
Apple began working on augmented reality glasses more than a year ago, sources say – March 27, 2017

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “jSeunnasepp” for the heads up.]


  1. They keep talking about AR glasses and how they’ll excite consumers. However, even the relatively light 3D glasses didn’t quite excite consumers for viewing 3D content on TVs. I don’t think consumers particularly like wearing glasses. Forget about them wearing bulky VR goggles.

    I think those AR apps are relatively exciting to look at but I can’t imagine how they’ll drive hardware sales. Meaning, I can’t see consumers rushing out to buy new hardware merely to run AR apps.

    1. Yes, the demo AR apps look rather gimmicky on an iPhone or iPad. I’m sure someone will come up with a compelling use. It may take some time and experimentation though.

      Just as with the Apple Watch, Apple will come up with their own designs but will likely team up with fashion eyewear makers as well to make some high style glasses. The AR glasses won’t (can’t) look geeky because they won’t sell to a wide audience.

      1. I agree unless and until the glasses can effectively just be similar to ‘fashion’ sunglasses and the like or perhaps a new alternative but equally appealing design aesthetic I really don’t see them catching on in the mainstream. And that suggests that the miniaturisation required to achieve that will still be some way off. If nothing else most people are not going to want to instantly advertise expensive devices that are going to invite thieves like smartphones do although though that I guess can never be fully avoided.

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