Apple’s latest release, iPhone 7, has got the entire tech world buzzing. While the phone might have been receiving some mixed reactions, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook seemed to have his head sorted for the company’s next big move.
Everyone keeping abreast with Apple and Tim Cook all these years might already know about Cook’s passion for virtual reality and augmented reality, and how much potential he sees in the these two emerging computer platforms where the users are required to don a headset consisting of a set of glasses.
While both virtual reality and augmented reality arouse his interest, he is a little more excited for the latter than former.
“There’s virtual reality and there’s augmented reality – both of these are incredibly interesting. But my own view is that augmented reality is the larger of the two, probably by far,” said Cook in an interview recently.
According to him, he swings more towards augmented reality because AR “gives the capability for both of us to sit and be very present talking to each other, but also have other things visually for both of us to see. Maybe it’s something we’re talking about, maybe it’s someone else here that is not here, present, but could be made to appear to be present with us. So there’s a lot of really cool things there.”
Tech experts believe that what Cook is referring to here is some kind of a Augmented reality tele-conferencing system that will allow one to virtually bring people into meetings, phone calls or school/college lectures etc.
Augmented reality basically works by superimposing computer graphics onto the real world, either through a dedicated headset or on a smartphone.
Cook believes, that the one real advantage that augmented reality has over virtual reality is that it’s less immersive. According to him, while on one hand, Virtual reality completely capitulates and immerses its user into an experience which is really cool and interesting, but on the other hand, it probably has a lower commercial interest over a period of time. And he believes, less people would be interested in that.
As stated above, Cook’s and Apple’s fascination with virtual reality and augmented reality isn’t something new. Apparently, the company has a hardworking force of about a hundred employees to work on the prototypes of the headset.
“I think AR is extremely interesting and sort of a core technology. So, yes, it’s something we’re doing a lot of things on behind that curtain we talked about,” said Tim Cook during a recent interview in an international newspaper.
I think, for now, all we can do is wait and watch for Apple’s next big move in the space of virtual reality and augmented reality.
Moreover, the speculation that Apple’s next big product would be based out of AR or VR becomes more of a confirmed guess when Apple has recently made some interesting hires, says a Business Insider report. According to the report, Apple in recent months hired Zeyu Li, a vision algorithm engineer from Augmented Reality-focused startup Magic Leap.
Yury Petrov is an another hire of Apple who is a research scientist. With a strong background in both Physics and Mathematics, Petrov previously spent two and a half years working as a research scientist for Occulus VR. Notably, Petrov’s LinkedIn profile reads, “I am a specialist in experimental psychology, human vision, optics for head-mounted displays, brain imaging, and mathematical methods of signal processing and analysis.”