Despite the fact that the prospect has existed on Apple’s horizon since the advent of VR itself, it wasn’t until the tail-end of January this year that we were finally able to catch a glimpse of Apple’s advance on the distinctive, though interconnected, worlds of virtual and augmented reality.
Now, with new reports emerging from The Information and Bloomberg, we can finally catch a glimpse of Apple’s line of interest in this area. From creating an App Store to feed a new VR headset – akin to Facebook’s Oculus Rift – to releasing their own augmented reality glasses – à la Google Glass – it looks as though the tech giant is almost ready to take the worlds of AR and VR by storm in the coming years.
Read more below.
Competitive Ground: The Nuanced World of VR Gaming
In advancing their capabilities with AR and VR technology, Apple are entering into a complex world in which the terms ‘AR’ and ‘VR’ themselves prove to be both easily defined, and extremely nebulous. In other words, augmented and virtual reality represent incredibly versatile mediums which give way – and have already given way – to a wide range of end-products.
Consider first the different applications of virtual reality. You can go so far as to don a full headset and immerse your senses within an entirely digital world that, it is intended, begins to feel very real, very quickly. At the other end of the scale, however, there are less-extreme instances of reality being recreated via virtual mediums; despite being incredibly different, Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 and the entire genre of online casino offer just two examples of this trend toward virtual-recreation.
As such, Apple is not only entering into a highly nuanced world – but one that is incredibly competitive, too. Casinos are fuelled by competitive offers, such as bonus spins and free money. You can click here for more casino bonuses, to see just how competitive this world has become – and what sort of landscape Apple could be shaping by pursuing VR so fervently.
Not only that, but Apple is posting itself directly against Facebook’s own interests in virtual reality – thus adding further fuel to the fire that continues to burn between these two giants.
Another area that may well prove challenging to Apple is in finding the right consumer for their AR glasses. We are all well aware of the struggles that Google’s own AR interests have been facing for more than seven years now, with the tech giant infamously struggling to find a significant market for their devices.
In 2020, the company refocused its marketing toward the commercial market with its Enterprise Edition, which boasts a number of potentially useful features for providing field workers with access to reference materials, and to enable first-person monitoring from those higher up.
At this point in time, it is still too early to predict exactly how Apple’s own AR-powered glasses will fit in with everyday life. In all likelihood, they will capture some of the benefits offered by the tech giant’s other wearable tech – although, of course, it is unlikely that they can offer the same benefits for fitness that the Apple Watch offers, which precludes the glasses from expanding the profitability of Apple Fitness+ within the competitive market for at-home fitness.
It is not unreasonable to anticipate, then, that the glasses will be pushed more toward the professional market – those at work who need to make their day that bit more efficient.
Of course, only time will tell whether or not these two technologies will find their place in the coming years, and whether or not Apple’s prestige within tech will continue to keep them buoyant within some of the most competitive markets in the world.