Apple working on cordless headset for VR and AR with 8K displays

More details emerge about the headset Apple is reported to be making.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

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Apple is working on a cordless headset that uses its own chips and supports both augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR).

A source familiar with Apple's headset plans told ZDNet sister site CNET that the headset will sport two 8K displays and could be available by 2020.

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Apple's headset also wouldn't need to be tethered to a computer or smartphone, addressing a key problem with setting up current headsets such as Oculus and HTC's Vive, which need to be wired to other devices that power the experience.

The work is being carried out by a team of Apple engineers under the code name T288, a project uncovered in a November report by Bloomberg, which said Apple was building a new iOS-based OS called rOS or 'reality operating system'.

That same team delivered ARKit, the software development toolkit that Apple released last year for developers to build AR apps for iPhones and iPads.

According to CNET, Apple plans to use a wireless technology called 60GHz WiGig, an emerging wireless standard for super-fast networking. Also, users won't need to install base stations in a room to detect their location.

The headset will reportedly be powered by a five-nanometer processor, a more powerful system than the iPhone X's 10-nanometer processor. The chip being targeted for the T288 AR/VR device would also be used as a reference design for the chips Apple wants to us in future Mac computers in place of Intel chips.

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Apple is aiming high for the resolution of its AR/VR headset screens given that 8K TVs from Samsung and LG have only been demoed at trade shows but aren't yet sold.

Apple is probably hoping to repeat the success of the iPhone and Apple Watch, two late-comers to the first smartphone and smartwatch industries that now take most of the profits.

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