Apple || سیب At a time when the metaverse had mostly disappeared from the news, a hotly anticipated new product launch seems ready to revive it. Today, let’s discuss what has changed in the virtual and mixed reality industries since we last left them and if Apple can develop popular applications for headsets that go beyond the video games that have up to now characterized it.
Don’t rush to evaluate Apple’s VR headset.
The first day of Apple || سیب Worldwide Developer Conference is Monday. This year, hardware is anticipated to take centre stage, in contrast to previous years when upcoming software changes dominate the speech. Apple is apparently about to introduce the Reality Pro, an approximately $3,000 headgear that seeks to serve a range of productivity needs, after more than seven years of research. (However convenient it may be for those of us writing about the area, Apple very probably won’t use “the metaverse” in any marketing materials.)
The Reality Pro will reportedly support VR FaceTime chats, immersive video, and an external display for linked Mac laptops, among other capabilities, according to Bloomberg’s Mark German, who has been on the reporting run of his career and has revealed practically every detail possible about the gadget. However, as of January, German stated that the business has not yet found a “killer app” for the gadget – an experience engaging enough to support the high price and encourage regular usage.
Some types of digital encounters have less appeal than they formerly did.
While coverage of VR frequently focuses on the average sales figures, use figures could warrant more attention. More than half of Meta’s $400 Quest headsets were no longer in use six months after purchase, according to a Wall Street Journal study from last year, demonstrating how quickly the novelty of the experience tends to wear off. (Or maybe how rapidly the numerous drawbacks of utilizing the technology add up.)
It has now been almost two years since Mark Zuckerberg, in announced that the company then called Facebook would pivot into building the metaverse. A year and a half into the pandemic, with hundreds of millions of people still keeping close to home and away from the office, the move was perfectly timed. Video chat and digital entertainment were then two of the only things tethering us to other people. It was not much of a stretch to assume that eventually, next-generation hardware and software would both radically improve those experiences and command more of our time as they did so.
However, a lot has changed since 2021. The excitement for some types of digital encounters has waned as the globe has slowly started to open again. Zoom peaked at $559 per share in October 2020 and is currently trading at $67.83. Zoom acted as a sort of barometer for investors’ trust in internet-enabled productivity. Massive, linked worlds have garnered widespread interest in Roblox and Fortnite from Epic Games, yet they still exist as isolated, 2D experiences. (The value of Roblox stock has fallen to less than a third of its peak level.)
According to estimates from market research company IDC, Facebook, which was so keen to pioneer this hoped-for platform transition that it changed its name to Meta, currently controls around 80%using its Quest and Quest Pro headphones, of the market. However, Reuters reported today that headgear sales are down 54.4% from a year ago, and that revenue from Meta’s Reality Labs segment fell 50% from a year ago to the most recent quarter.
The $1,500 Meta Quest Pro was introduced last year with the goal of diversifying the market for headsets away from the gaming applications that account for the majority of its use. Sales projections, however, imply that consumer interest in features like virtual desktops and VR conference rooms has been meagre. (We met in one of those VR conference rooms on an early episode of Hard Fork; I remember the experience mostly for how hard it was to get everyone’s setup working.)
Apple || سیب One of the greatest advantages of the recent AI frenzy is that it has made it crystal plain to us what it looks like when people are genuinely passionate about something. About seven months after debut, 12 percent of Americans have already used ChatGPT for business; it’s a product people bring up to me in casual conversation before they even realise I’m a tech writer. The fact that a text box captured the world’s attention once more after billions of dollars were spent hyping up virtual reality and cryptocurrency is very amusing.
All of this means that Apple has its job cut out for them in this situation. The company’s short-term goals are cautiously reasonable. It had originally anticipated selling roughly 3 million units annually, but it has now reduced those projections to around 1 million, then to 900,000 units,” said Gurman last month. The business sells more than 200 million iPhones annually in contrast. But eventually, the business sees a world in which knowledge workers constantly use headsets like these.
Only after consistent iteration do the company’s products finally succeed.
That won’t be achievable in the near future. For all except the most ardent early adopters, the headsets look to be too big, their battery life is too short, and their purported design makes too many evident sacrifices. This argues that the Reality Pro will help Apple less as a business and more as a way to get customers into the company’s retail locations’ demo area. on the level of the iPhone, along with the absence of a killer app.
Meta will work to leverage its position at the lower end of the market in the meanwhile. The business said today that the $500 Meta Quest 3 will go on sale this autumn with an upgraded CPU, display, and smaller design. (The business deducted $100 off the cost of its Quest 2 headset.) It will be interesting to see if Meta or Apple can address the issue of consumers’ propensity to put newly purchased gadgets in a drawer and forget about them. (I humbly ask that either business merely makes VR conversation as engaging as what Google is developing with light-field displays in Project Starline.)
Apple || سیب All in all, Monday won’t be the appropriate day to assess Apple’s success or failure. The day the Reality Pro goes on sale won’t be any different either. The company’s 1.0 releases, like the iPhone and Apple Watch, frequently have visible flaws. The company’s products don’t finally succeed until consistent iteration and help from outside developers. I waited until the Series 5, which was the first model with an always-on display, to get an Apple Watch. Today, I find it impossible to fathom not wearing the wristband. $41 billion was made by the division last year. It arrived. Unless ChatGPT develops sentience, it will probably take four or more years for any firm to figure out how to overcome the technological and creative difficulties required to bring about a truly VR-centric platform transition. Even while the metaverse has had its frustrating moments, anybody who is willing to look may see the little but steady advancements made each year.
Regardless of the challenges it faces, Apple often produces high-quality hardware in the end. On Monday, remember that there is still a long way to go in this situation.