Apple VR headset moves into focus — dual 8K displays, 12 cameras and a $3,000 price tag (report)

Apple VR
(Image credit: Snappa)

The Apple mixed-reality headset is kind of an open secret now, which many of you have known about since the rumor mill started churning about last year. They speak of an ultra-high end device with the price to match it, and a recent report pretty much confirms that.

According to The Information, this device sees the Cupertino-based tech titan move their focus away from solely augmented reality (AR) and place it on a mixed-reality experience that leans more on virtual reality (VR) with some AR sprinkled throughout.

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A drawing of Apple's possible mixed-reality device by The Information.

A drawing of Apple's possible mixed-reality device by The Information. (Image credit: The Information)

The technology making this possible, according to a person with direct knowledge of the device, is a dozen cameras for “tracking hand movements and showing video of the real world to people wearing it,” which people can watch on the dual “8K displays and advanced technology for tracking eye-tracking technology.”

That kind of resolution is way beyond anything we have at the moment in terms of picture quality and would require ludicrous levels of computational power to pull off on something as small and lightweight as a VR headset. 

Apple has an answer for this too, after working for years on technology that “uses eye tracking to fully render only parts of the display where the user is looking.” That means they can reduce the quality of graphics in your peripheral vision and reduce the sheer power needed under the hood.

But it comes at a cost — a rather steep $3,000 to be precise, to put it in direct competition with Microsoft’s Hololens. This indicates you’ll probably see Apple gunning for business customers with this device rather than the general consumer when these are set to release in 2022.

Which begs the question. What about a cheaper Apple VR headset for the rest of us? For those, it’s expected that we will see a sleeker, more affordable version in 2023. To stay up-to-date on all the latest news and rumors, check out our Apple VR headset hub.

Jason England
Content Editor

Jason brought a decade of tech and gaming journalism experience to his role as a writer at Laptop Mag, and he is now the Managing Editor of Computing at Tom's Guide. He takes a particular interest in writing articles and creating videos about laptops, headphones and games. He has previously written for Kotaku, Stuff and BBC Science Focus. In his spare time, you'll find Jason looking for good dogs to pet or thinking about eating pizza if he isn't already.