Apple's Mixed-Reality Headset Rumored To Feature Proprietary Charger

Apple is set to shift away from its in-house Lightning ports on iPhones within the next couple of years, but it appears that its upcoming mixed-reality headset will feature a fresh kind of proprietary port. The latest edition of Bloomberg's PowerOn newsletter by Mark Gurman claims that the wearable device will come equipped with "a new proprietary charger" in addition to a USB-C port. The power transfer cable that fits into this port reportedly has a round tip and tethers to the port magnetically, which sounds somewhat like the round magnetic power plug on the current-gen iMac. 

It's rather interesting to hear about Apple potentially reverting back to a proprietary connector for another generation when the EU mandates that many consumer electronics devices should adopt USB-C as standard. Apple is reportedly making the switch the USB-C for iPhones as early as next year, but the headset will potentially adapt to that restriction by technically offering a USB-C port sitting alongside a proprietary outlet. 

But this proprietary cable won't be a simple push-and-lock mechanism, it seems. Users will reportedly have to twist and turn the cable clockwise to lock it in a fixed position, ensuring that it doesn't fall off, especially when users are engaged in activities while wearing the headset like working out or playing games. Moreover, one end of this proprietary cable is said to be permanently attached to the battery pack, which provides the juice to the headset.

An inconvenient battery solution

Talking about the headset's battery pack, Bloomberg's report claims that it will only last for about two hours on a single charge. The battery is said to be roughly the same size as an iPhone and looks like one of those MagSafe battery packs that attach magnetically to the rear face of a compatible Apple smartphone. The battery pack for Apple's headset charges via a USB-C port, while the adapter is reportedly the same charging brick that Apple ships with its MacBook Pro laptops.

Previous reports suggest that the external battery pack design has been a topic of hot contention at Apple, owing to its alleged sub-par battery life and the convenience aspect of having to carry it around separately. However, the latest report claims that Apple will also sell battery packs separately so that users can swap the drained unit and go on with their work. The headset, which might cost around $3,000, will reportedly run a slightly modified version of iOS apps and will even double as a secondary screen for your Mac.

Apple is heavily rumored to introduce the headset at its upcoming WWDC event in June, but industry analysts claim it will be aimed more at developers and enthusiasts than the average Apple customer. While the asking price definitely sounds like a deterrent, leaks suggest that it's the lack of a "killer app" that is holding back the true potential for blitz marketing.