The havoc of competition between the Facebook Oculus and Apple for the AR headset is on the edge where both the companies are competing over the generation changing technology which will alter the mass media industry completely by replacing the wired-headphones and watching the videos. And the technology is "Augmented Reality" & "Virtual Reality".
The Ideologies behind using the VR headset:
When we think of VR headsets, we see the game playing virtually using the headset and it would also offer the tools and skills used in gaming. Some stated that the majority of people don’t spend their time playing games now, so there is no distant future for VR. Then also, Facebook has given one shot in using the AR technology and bought the Oculus Rift Company for $2 Billion. The foremost focus was the gaming sector, but the second priority in the lane is 360-degree videos. But there are many negative comments on the social media company to buy the AR technology such as
"Would people be sharing the status and updates in a 3D VR(Virtual Reality) world? Looking at someone's photos in VR isn’t that fun."
And talking about the socialization, the people are already has been isolated using the phone, and on top of that, the VR headset will make the people more isolated. For instance, while friends and family members in the same room can watch the TV together, and with the VR headset, one can alone see it.
But if we see the History of the Innovations, Back in 1800 in the era of technology of telephone, if you tell to the people there you can call anyone, anywhere in the world, they would just deny and picture the number of telephones in one room. But all know how far we came in innovations. Therefore, predicting VR technology is far-beyond now.
AR is used in the different fields:
Augmented reality is a technology that allows you to overlay the digital image onto the real world through glasses or screens. Snapchat is using AR in their face filters and Pokemon Go is using it in their gaming sector.
High-tech Companies are including AR in their applications in which shoppers can see what an object can see in the 3D image and how that object will look in their home before buying it.
The Jigspace uses the 3D visualization for displaying the details of the mechanical parts such as engine or a pump or laying out equipment in a room
Companies are using it to improve the efficiency of virtual meetings.
Retailers are using it to display the products on their eCommerce sites.
Why AR is Important to Apple?
Apple's prime objective is to build lightweight glasses to provide the AR(Augmented Reality) view of the natural world. Wearers would be looking at the real world but it will be displayed through AR glasses. However, there are mixed reviews for the headset of Apple Glasses, with two reports claiming to have expensive than other products. Apple Analyst Ming-Cho Kuo, stated that the company is working on an (AR) Augmented reality device while the Bloomberg report stated that the company's first VR(Virtual Reality) will be expensive. Apple is using lidar technology to accurately place virtual objects in the real world. Innovations are building and in the process of emerging in the AR tools. For instance, Facebook is working on the AR(Augmented Reality) glasses, and Apple is educating the users and developers on how to build the AR platform.
The Apple VR(Virtual Reality) Headset will showcase an all-encompassing digital 3D environment for watching the video, communicating, & Gaming. (AR) Augmented Reality, the ability to image overlay and information. The report also Apple has also planned to launch as early in 2022, which will compete against Sony's PlayStation VR & Facebook's Oculus.
According to Bloomberg, Apple's headset would be more expensive than other rivals, which costs from $300 to $900. Some believe that Apple will be sold just one headset per day per retail store and they roughly have 500 retail stores, hence in that manner, the annual sales would be just 180,000 units. Later on, Apple denied this statement.
There is a number of advanced technology which Apple is gonna use in its AR-VR Headset:
Advanced Chips used in the Headset:
- Its goal is to add the most advanced chips in headsets with high-resolution displays than other VR products. The chips tested in the headsets beat the performance of Apple's M1 Mac processors.
Custom Prescribed Lens:
- Further, Apple includes a fan, in the design of the headset codenamed N30 has an inclusion of the fan and powerful processors which result in the too heavy and bulky design, so Apple had to shrink the size so the users cannot wear eyeglasses while wearing the headset. In order to address this problem, custom prescription lenses are inserted into the headset. Apple is also exploring ways to implement prescriptions at the online sales and also in the retail stores.
Works without any support:
- The headset is designed to be work alone without any operating support from other devices, i.e it would working on a battery that is similar to Facebook's Oculus, while Sony requires a Playstation Gaming Console.
8K Dual Screen:
- The Headset would have 8k displays which have an array of cameras for tracking the outside world, swappable headbands, and eye-tracking. 8k display has four-time ultimate pixels as a 4k screen. According to Value Index, (Virtual Reality) VR headset uses twice as 1440 x 1600 pixels displays.
You might be thinking that 8K screens are taking up the battery’s life and require a large number of processors, and for that apple, Apple uses the Software for Eye-tracking with the headset which is designed to track where the users are looking and only have that part of space where they are looking would be only 8k resolution. And other parts of the screen would get blurred to reserve the processing power which uses a technique called "Foveated Rendering"
LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) scanning:
- LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) scanning uses the lasers to identify the distance & object's depth. This tool allows devices to accurately map the virtual from real life objects.
Facebook Vs. Apple:
When Facebook bought Oculus for $3 Billion in 2014, it was the first one to bet on the VR technology, while for mobile devices, it relied on the companies like Apple and its iOS operating system. Future plans include AR(Augmented Reality) glasses and continued improvements to VR(Virtual Reality) headsets. But in the headset wars, Facebook is clearly in the lead for now.
AR hasn’t been the focus for Apple over the last few years, but it iterated in its own devices in iPhone 12 and iPad Pro using the "Lidar", which enables the better tracking used in AR devices in the real world.
Facebook is leading, but Apple is not behind yet. This is not a case of one company taking over the entire market over the other, but the companies are racing to launch the technology which will change the face.