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Apple Could Start Making AR Glasses as Early as This Year

Apple still hasn’t shared any details about its plans for augmented reality (AR) hardware, but we may not have to wait much longer: Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has had a very good track record when it comes to predicting the company’s roadmap, expects Apple to start manufacturing AR glasses as early as Q4 of this year.

The iPhone maker may ramp up the production of the glasses by Q2 of next year, according to Kuo. 9to5Mac was first to report on Kuo’s note Friday; Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kuo expects Apple’s AR glasses to be powered by the iPhone, which could bring down the price of the device while also doing away with the need to connect them to a PC.

Standalone AR glasses still come with a premium price tag: Microsoft’s newly-introduced Hololens 2 costs a whopping $3500, whereas Magic Leap is charging developers $2295 for its Magic Leap One headset.

The now-reported timing for Apple’s AR hardware matches previous reports about the project. CNet reported a year ago that the company was looking to combine augmented and virtual reality in one device, and that it was looking to sell the device as early as 2020.

Apple reportedly has a team of several hundred working on the project, but had a significant departure earlier this year: Last month, Variety was first to report that AR/VR pioneer and Hololens co-inventor Avi Bar-Zeev left the company in January.

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