Apple mixed reality headset
Apple engineers are under pressure to ship the AR headset this year.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook sided with COO Jeff Williams’ decision to launch the AR/VR headset this year. The company’s design team wanted to wait a few more years to launch a sleeker pair of AR Glasses.

The headset’s launch time has been a point of contention inside Apple. Until 2019, when Jony Ive was at the helm of design, it was unimaginable to go against the design team’s wishes.

Apple’s design team wanted to push back the headset’s launch

Apple’s AR/VR headset has been in development for seven years — twice as long as the iPhone. Its launch has seemingly been delayed year after year, causing tensions inside the company.

Reportedly, Apple’s operation team wanted to launch a version of the headset with a ski google-like design. It would have allowed users to watch 3D videos, chat with realistic avatars on FaceTime calls, and do interactive workouts. But the design team pushed back on its release.

The designers want to launch a lightweight version of the AR glasses. However, this will take time as the technology is still not ready. But with Jony Ive no longer in charge of Apple’s design operations, the team does not enjoy the same powers as before.

A Financial Report reveals that Tim Cook sided with Jeff Williams, Apple’s COO, and pressed ahead with the headset’s launch this year. This was despite objections from the design team. Seemingly, designers and engineers inside the company are under huge pressure to ship the headset.

Apple reportedly planned to launch the sleeker AR glasses in 2025. But that’s no longer the case. The company is now focusing on a cheaper version of its AR/VR headset to attract more customers.

Don’t expect Apple headset to set the sales chart on fire

Apple only expects to sell around a million units of its headset in the first year. This won’t be surprising because the device is expected to cost around $3,000. However, the company plans a massive marketing blitz surrounding the product to generate hype.

The Cupertino giant has traditionally been slow when it enters a new product category. The original Apple Watch was nowhere as good as the existing models. Apple continued working on the wearable despite less than favorable initial reviews to make it the killer iPhone accessory that it is today.

With the AR/VR headset, Apple is planning something similar. The company wants to get developers onboard the train first. As they build more AR/VR apps and unlock new use cases, it will automatically attract consumers to the platform.

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Tim Cook approved Apple’s AR headset launch this year despite design team opposition

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Tim Cook approved Apple’s AR headset launch this year despite design team opposition

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