Seeking new ways to attract and retain subscribers and drive interest in AR technology, and, most importantly, in order to help support widely-rumored Apple AR smartglasses, Apple is reportedly preparing to add augmented reality content to its Apple TV+ streaming video service.
In the new feature, elements of a TV show, like characters or objects, would be displayed on a viewer’s phone or tablet and integrated into the surrounding environment, according to people familiar with the project. For example, someone watching a moon-walking scene in the Apple show “For All Mankind” might be able to see a virtual lunar rover on their device’s display, seemingly perched atop their living room coffee table. The option would serve as bonus content akin to the director commentary or trailer that accompany a movie download and would be accessed from Apple’s TV app on the iPhone or iPad.
The AR feature is expected to debut next year, ahead of an Apple headset in 2022 that will be built around augmented and virtual reality, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to discuss the plan publicly. A release of the TV+ feature had previously been set for later this year, but the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on software development and film production impeded that goal.
MacDailyNews Take: Of note, regarding the many customers who are still on a free year of service that comes with the purchase of an Apple product, Gurman reports: “The first trial accounts will expire just weeks after the next iPhones are set to debut in October. The company is considering keeping a free access offer to lure new subscribers but with a reduced period of time.”