The meta-company Facebook and Apple Inc. is expected to launch mixed reality glasses next year, which the two companies hope will transform the head-worn industry into the next big product in the industry.
But there is a significant obstacle to the spread of these devices, as Palmer Loki, co-founder of the virtual reality glasses program “Oculus” – who left the program in early 2017, says that there is no price low enough to attract a large group of people to use reality glasses by default.
Facebook’s best-selling Quest 2 virtual reality glasses sell for $400, and accounted for 78% of the emerging virtual reality market in 2021, according to IDC, but users who want next-generation technology will have to spend more than that amount.
The company said earlier this year that the upcoming high-end headphones from Meta, codenamed “Cambria,” are expected to cost at least $800.
It is said that the unannounced “Apple” device could cost thousands of dollars, and this is a huge burden on the pockets of users of new technology products that have not yet become mainstream.
IDC said that more than 11 million units of VR glasses were shipped last year, and that number is equal to what Apple sells of iPhones every few weeks.
How can the virtual reality glasses market expand?
To expand the market, Meta and Apple will have to convince consumers that more advanced systems are worth the investment. The two companies are apparently betting on a new technology called mixed reality transit, which requires better screens and greater processing power.
If the mixed reality transit works as advertised, the virtual reality glasses will also act as a set of augmented reality glasses that integrate the virtual world with the user’s real environment, enhancing the possibilities of applications and use in the real world.
With current virtual reality devices, the experience is limited to what is on the screen of the headset, while the powerful cameras on the outside of the virtual reality headset in the mixed reality transit technology capture video of the outside world and send it to two. or more screens, one of which is in front of the user’s eyes, and this allows developers to play through mixed reality or superimpose software or graphics on real video from outside.
Proponents of mixed reality say we’ll eventually be able to incorporate the technology into lightweight glasses with clear lenses.
Today’s problem is that mixed reality requires very expensive parts and powerful headsets, which limits the size of the market.
In addition to advanced cameras, mixed reality transportation devices need depth sensors that can capture detailed video and measurements of the user’s surroundings, and they also need to track the user’s eyes so that power-up graphics are not lost that will not be seen, and powerful processing capabilities and software to reducing response time so that what is not delayed is seen by the user when viewed inside the headset.
Even more important is the high-resolution screen, which must be denser than a smartphone screen because it is very close to the user’s eyes. The average smartphone screen is about 550 pixels per inch, but mixed reality devices require screens of about 3,500 pixels per inch according to Counter Point Research.
Apple is notoriously secretive about its product roadmap, especially when it comes to new categories, and the company has invested heavily in virtual reality research and development in its technology development group and bought several mixed reality startups.
According to Bloomberg and The Information, Apple is developing a mixed reality headset that looks like ski goggles with a powerful home-made chip.
The headset is said to support video traffic and boost gaming and other applications.
At one point, Apple wanted a resolution at least comparable to a 4K TV for its first headphones, because anything less could result in users seeing individual pixels, the information said.
Public opinion on the pricing of mixed reality devices
SlashGear conducted a survey on the prices of virtual reality glasses, and the respondents expressed their dissatisfaction with the new price.
The vast majority of 590 respondents said they wouldn’t pay $400 for the Oculus Quest 2.
In terms of replacing headsets of equal or better quality, the PlayStation VR is $50 cheaper, but requires you to get a PlayStation 4 (PS4).