Apple buys Akonia Holographics, a startup focused on lenses for AR glasses

“Apple Inc has acquired a startup focused on making lenses for augmented reality glasses, the company confirmed on Wednesday, a signal Apple has ambitions to make a wearable device that would superimpose digital information on the real world,” Stephen Nellis reports for Reuters. “Apple confirmed it acquired Longmont, Colorado-based Akonia Holographics. ‘Apple buys smaller companies from time to time, and we generally don’t discuss our purpose or plans,’ the iPhone maker said in a statement.”

Akonia “was founded in 2012 by a group of holography scientists and had originally focused on holographic data storage before shifting its efforts to creating displays for augmented reality glasses, according to its website,” Nellis reports. “Akonia said its display technology allows for “thin, transparent smart glass lenses that display vibrant, full-color, wide field-of-view images.” The firm has a portfolio of more than 200 patents related to holographic systems and materials, according to its website.”

“The purchase price and date of the acquisition could not be learned, though one executive in the augmented reality industry said the Akonia team had become “very quiet” over the past six months, implying that the deal may have happened in the first half of 2018,” Nellis reports. “‘This is one of those huge things that we’ll look back at and marvel on the start of it,’ Cook said of augmented reality on a conference call with investors last year.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We want our Apple Glasses!

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

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

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

Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple Glasses coming in 2020 – August 15, 2018
Gene Munster: Apple will release Apple Glasses late in 2021 – May 17, 2018
Apple patent application reveals work on eye-tracking technology for VR and AR headsets – April 27, 2018
Apple prepping Micro-LED displays for Apple Watch and Smartglasses for 2019, sources say – April 3, 2018
Apple CEO Cook on the future of fashion, shopping, and AR smartglasses – October 11, 2017
Apple’s AR smartglasses – understanding the issues – August 29, 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


  1. glasses, goggles, virtual visual misinformation. what of those prone to motion sickness. i’d play online games if i could but when my inner balance is thrown off i go down for hours and it goes down quickly. it sucketh thusly, with a sickening affliction. more or lessly. i fear i will be one of the VR persona non grata. woe be unto me and my digital leper community.

    1. I have to agree. As I have gotten older, my sensitivity to motion sickness has increased. I used to be able to read in a car for hours. Now I often begin feeling bad within ten minutes. And playing video games in a moving car – rapid headache and nausea.

      Getting old sucks.

      1. hhmmm. i got migraines starting around 9yrs old thru around 12yrs old where i had to remain motionless. they stopped. then i became prone to motion sickness. strange and unfortunately true.

  2. I would love AR/VR glassses if they’re done right. Mustn’t look dorky, weigh a ton and have good battery life. Picture/video recording would probably be a no-no as it’s not socially acceptable to do, see Google Glasses.

    The biggest problem is what to do if somebody needs to wear glasses in everyday life. I used to have 20/20 vision now I wear varifoculs. I normally need to change the prescription every two years, sometimes after only a year. How much will it cost to get new lenses for Apple Glasses? Quite a bit I’d say.

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