Apple may be just one day away from unveiling its most ambitious new hardware product in years.
At its Worldwide Developers Conference, which kicks off Monday at its Cupertino, California, campus, Apple (AAPL) is widely expected to introduce a “mixed reality” headset that offers both virtual reality and augmented reality, a technology that overlays virtual images on live video of the real world.
The highly anticipated release of an AR/VR headset would be Apple’s biggest hardware product launch since the debut of the Apple Watch in 2015. It could signal a new era for the company and potentially revolutionize how millions interact with computers and the world around them.
But the headset is just one of many announcements expected at the developers event. Apple will also show off a long list of software updates that will shape how people use its most popular devices, including the iPhone and Apple Watch.
Apple may also tease how it plans to incorporate AI into more of its products and services, and keep pace with a renewed arms race over the technology in Silicon Valley.
The event will be livestreamed on Apple’s website and YouTube. It is set to start at 10:00 a.m. PT/1:00 p.m. ET.
Here’s a closer look at what to expect:
A ‘mixed reality’ headset
For years, Apple CEO Tim Cook has expressed interest in augmented reality. Now Apple finally appears ready to show off what it’s been working on.
According to Bloomberg, the new headset, which could be called Reality One or Reality Pro, will have an iOS-like interface, display immersive video and include cameras and sensors to allow users to control it via their hands, eye movements and with Siri. The device is also rumored to have an outward-facing display that will show eye movements and facial expressions, allowing onlookers to interact with the person wearing the headset without feeling as though they’re talking to a robot.
Apple’s new headset is expected to pack apps for gaming, fitness and meditation, and offer access to iOS apps such as Messages, FaceTime and Safari, according to Bloomberg. With the FaceTime option, for example, the headset will “render a user’s face and full body in virtual reality,” to create…