Microsoft has a habit of being early with a technology and then being superceded by competitors who benefit from the lessons Microsoft learnt the hard way.
It seems when it comes to Mixed Reality this may again be the case. Microsoft, of course, released the HoloLens in 2016, but we have recently heard that Google is only in the early stages of developing their own augmented reality headset. Apple has been rumoured to be working on their own headset for some time now, but according to well known Apple analyst Gene Munster, we should also not be expecting that device any time soon.
Speaking on behalf of his company Loup Ventures, he notes:
We believe AR is real and Apple will be a beneficiary. We expect Apple’s AR theme to play out in three phases. First, this fall we expect 2 to 3 new iPhones to join iPhone X with advanced optics for AR (VCSEL arrays). Second, AR apps built using ARKit will slowly become the next gold rush for developers, led by games, e-commerce, and education. Last, we expect Apple will release Apple Glasses late in 2021.
This is even later than the 2019 date earlier rumoured, but as the report notes, will build on phone-based AR work Apple is already engaging in.
The late date will allow Apple to release more advanced glasses which are sophisticated but inconspicuous, which may allow Apple to break through to buyers in the general public, something else no company has managed to achieve so far, but which has been Apple’s particular talent over the years.
Like Windows Mobile, the Spot Watch and tablet PCs, do our readers think Microsoft has once again jumped the gun before the technology and market was really ready? Let us know below.