Apple has long been rumored to be working on AR glasses, but CEO Tim Cook and others have repeatedly denied that anything is in the works. While that may still be the case, it appears the company’s interest in augmented reality — which Tim Cook has claimed will “change the way we use technology forever” — hasn’t subsided, as Bloomberg reports that the company was in attendance at CES 2018 talking to suppliers of components for AR glasses.
Apple wasn’t the only one holding these discussions, as Google, Facebook and Snap were all spotted as well, but it is the only company of the group that hasn’t launched a head-mounted display. Google has Daydream View, Facebook acquired Oculus in 2014 and Snap tried and failed to breach the market with Spectacles two years ago.
Apple has yet to confirm any plans to release a pair of AR glasses at any point in the future, but a Bloomberg report from late 2017 claimed that Apple will have the technology ready by 2019, with the intention of shipping hardware at some point in 2020. The glasses are said to run on a new platform dubbed “rOS,” which stands for “reality operating system.” rOS is be based on iOS, but Apple is still figuring out how it wants users to interact with it.
Of course, none of this has been confirmed by Apple yet, and if the technology really is at least a year out, we likely won’t see much concrete evidence of it for quite some time. Cook even said in an interview with The Independent last October that “the technology itself doesn’t exist to do that in a quality way.”
There isn’t much concrete information to work with at this point, but it appears that Apple is in the process of figuring out how it would build AR glasses and who it would build them with, provided the project ever see the light of day.