Why Apple Had A Secret Meeting With AR Glasses Part Makers at CES 2019

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What is the common thread that runs between a secret meeting with AR glasses part makers, Waveguide technology, and ARKit?

Augmented Reality (AR) has been in the news in the last few years, but no manufacturer has produced anything that has made a splash in the waters.

There’s been a major issue in the mobile industry, and that’s lack of true innovation. A lot of people have accused Apple of their products just being pricey without putting out anything really mind-blowing, just like when the company created the iPod.

But many people are coming to consensus that the AR glasses will be the next big thing which will be created by the company.

Over the years, there have been so many clues like claiming patent rights for technology related to AR. The company has also hired AR specialists. This makes us believe Apple is working on something related to AR technology.

The key personnel and engineers at Apple were at the CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2019 that held from January 8th to 11th. Though they didn’t have an official presence there, their major reason of going there was to have a secret meeting with different AR glasses parts suppliers. This also caused a rumour that in 2020, Apple will most likely launch a pair of branded AR glasses.

Meeting with suppliers of AR parts is now a norm for Apple, because it was reported that the company also had similar meetings at CES 2018.

Representatives from more than 6 companies also had meetings with the suppliers of AR waveguide at the CES 2019. The companies include Vuzix, Linus, WaveOptics, DigiLens, and some others.

What Is Waveguide?

But what is waveguide? In AR technology, waveguide is very small prism which is fixed in a see-through material, just like glass. This material is then used to change the direction of the image to the user’s eyes without having an adverse effect on their vision.

Waveguide is one of the major structures used in see-through AR displays, which we can see in products like the Magic Leap One and the Microsoft Hololens.

There is a rumour about Apple working on a pair of “Apple Glasses”, an AR headset which could make its way into the market in the next couple of years.

Some other rumours also claim that the project is called “T288.” The Apple Glasses supposedly run on its own operating system known as the “rOS”, and it features ultra high-resolution 8K displays.

It is still unclear if Apple wants to rely on WaveGuide, Mixed Reality, HollowMirror, or perhaps some other unknown technology for its AR headset.

What of ARKit?

One of the largest AR platforms in the world is the Apple’s ARKit. The first model of the ARKit was introduced by the company in 2017. The second model was also unveiled by the company at the Apple WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) in 2018.

It is believed that the third model will be unveiled at the Apple WWDC 2019 (that’s dependent on Apple following the pattern of last year).

It was also reported that Apple acquired Vrvana in 2017. This company is a Canadian AR startup that created a hybrid headset known as Totem.

Apple glasses, AR glasses to be built on Waveguide?

The Totem is a single device which is formed from the combination of AR and VR technology. This device used an array of cameras to allow 6DoF tracking. It also captures live views of the physical world and is being displayed on OLED panels located opposite one’s eyes.

Waiting For Apple’s AR Glasses

As usual, Apple has not released an official statement about its AR glasses due to the fact that the project is very complex, but we do believe that it’ll be unveiled in the next few years.


Do you believe in the possibilities of Augmented Reality technology? Let us know in the comments section below.

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