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Apple AR headset delayed again, WWDC 2023 debut uncertain

Published Mar 30th, 2023 9:33AM EDT
Apple mixed reality glasses render - side view.
Image: Ian Zelbo

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Yesterday, Apple announced that WWDC 2023 would take place from June 5 to June 9 at Apple Park. While rumors believe the company could be planning to unveil its Mixed Reality headset at the special keynote, reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo isn’t that sure.

According to him, Apple isn’t “very optimistic” about the RealIty Pro headset announcement recreating the “astounding iPhone moment,” sot the mass production schedule for assembly has been pushed back by another month or two to mid-to-late 3Q23.

That said, Kuo believes this delay adds uncertainty to whether the new device will appear at the WWDC 2023, as people expect. In addition, the shipment forecast for the Mixed Reality headset is now 200,000 to 300,000 units, lower than the market consensus of 500,000 units or more.

The analyst explains the main concerns Apple has regarding its Mixed Reality headset, which include: the company isn’t optimistic about the market feedback regarding this product, the economic downturn, compromises on some hardware specifications for mass production such as weight, the readiness of the ecosystem and apps, and its high selling price between $3,000-4,000.

During the weekend, reports by The New York Times and Bloomberg said Apple has already made a keynote-like presentation to its top 100 executives. Both publications concluded that the $3,000 gadget lacks a killer app and will require an external battery. Bloomberg reports the battery needs to be replaced every couple of hours. Moreover, the headset might be uncomfortable to wear.

Will Apple announce the Mixed Reality headset at WWDC 2023?

While Ming-Chi Kuo is a pessimist about an announcement three months from now, it’s still possible that Apple will unveil the product with no demo for journalists and take a few more months to release it. Historically, the company had already unveiled products that launched months later, such as the original iPhone, Apple Watch, HomePod, and the 2019 Mac Pro.

As we approach the WWDC 2023 presentation day, BGR will keep you posted on the latest rumors.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.