The battle cry of many network operators, tech companies, and especially smartphone makers for the past year or so has been 5G. With the exception of Google and Apple, of course. Neither company is convinced that the technology is ready for consumers and are biding their time to put out products that support the fifth-gen network. That may finally happen next year and it could go hand in hand with Apple’s other great 2020 reveal: a pair of augmented reality glasses.
Apple has been known to be leaning towards AR technology for years. After all, it has practically snubbed virtual reality and CEO Tim Cook even went on the record about his belief in the future of augmented reality. Apple has also long been rumored to be working on smart glasses ala Google Glass that put those AR ideas to work and, according to Bloomberg, that may all come to a head next year.
Of course, Apple has also always been rumored to be launching its own take on the smart glasses product but 2020 could have the perfect ingredients to actually make that happen. There’s 5G, for one, which will undoubtedly help speed up the transmission of data between endpoints, including the first 5G-compatible iPhone. That iPhone will also reportedly have a 3D camera on its back, making it an ideal tool for AR experiences.
That said, Bloomberg doesn’t give any specific month or even quarter for that launch. Apple may already have the hardware to make those holographic smart glasses a reality, thanks to a variety of recent company and tech acquisitions, but it’s still groping for an AR app and experience that will make the product a must-have. If executives aren’t convinced they have one ready, they could push back the launch even further.
Apple won’t be alone, though, as Facebook and Amazon are also rumored to be working on their version of smart glasses. Except Facebook’s might be all about copying Snap’s Spectacles rather than AR. Given that crowd, though, Apple will have to tread carefully to ensure that its own Smart Glasses won’t be the privacy nightmare Google Glass was predicted to be, until, of course, Google killed it.