Apple Reported To Be Further Delaying AR/MR Headset

Apple's grand plans to launch its much-talked-about mixed-reality headset at WWDC 2023 aren't going as planned, a new tweet by noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims. The news comes just a day after Apple confirmed that this year's WWDC is scheduled to run from June 5 – 9. Given that Apple's keynote has played venue to several important product launches, there has been the expectation that the company will use this occasion to showcase something entirely new.

According to Kuo, the head honchos at Apple aren't entirely sure that the company's first mixed-reality headset in its current form is ready for prime time. But, more importantly, these executives are also reportedly worried about the possibility of this vital launch not making a huge impact on the audience and potential buyers. Apparently, Apple wants its mixed-reality headset to dazzle the audience with its capabilities and, in some way, recreate the wow factor people tend to associate with the first iPhone launch event.

This is not the first time we've heard reports of a possible delayed launch of Apple's mixed-reality headset. Apple's MR/AR headset program has been beset with delays for several years now, according to various leaks and insiders. The project has been in development for quite some time, with some reports claiming that Apple originally intended to launch the device in 2020. That obviously didn't happen, supposedly on account of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, now that the worst phase of the pandemic is behind us, the continuous string of delays isn't looking good for Apple.

Apple could still launch the headset in 2023

The possibility of an unenthusiastic product response is one of many alleged reasons for Apple's reluctance to launch its AR/MR headset soon. Apple is also said to be concerned about the impact of the recent economic downturn on this product's shipment numbers.

Apple initially expected to ship more than 500,000 units of the headset, a figure which has since then been revised to 300,000 if we are to believe Mr. Kuo. Additionally, given that the mixed-reality headset is likely to cost upwards of $3,000, the market for the product is already tiny. Besides these reasons, Apple's internal market survey seems to have revealed that people aren't too keen on getting themselves an AR headset from any company — including Apple.

Despite these seemingly unfavorable circumstances, Apple is likely to press ahead with a launch — albeit a delayed one anyway. Kuo now expects Apple to push back the launch of this AR/MR headset by a "couple of months." This could also mean that there is a chance of Apple's headset making its debut alongside the next generation of iPhones in September 2023.