Google ‘Project Iris’ AR Headset in the Works, May Feature In-House Processor: Report

Google is reportedly working on an augmented reality (AR) headset that could be launched in 2024. The headset, a part of the company’s ‘Project Iris’, is said to feature an in-house processor from Google. Tech giants Meta and Apple are also developing their own wearable AR technology. Unlike Apple’s upcoming mixed reality headset that is expected to feature two processing chips for on-device rendering, Google’s offering will reportedly offload some graphics rendering to the company’s cloud servers.

According to a report by The Verge, citing people connected to the project, Google is working on an AR headset that is powered by a custom processor developed by the company and could eventually run on a custom operating system developed by the company. The company is yet to reveal any details of its under-development AR headset, including whether it will be launched under the Pixel branding.

The AR headset from Google is said to feature outward-facing cameras, and users will be looking at a screen with a “ski goggles” design, according to the report, unlike the company’s older Google Glass design that was modelled on spectacles. Meanwhile, the early prototypes do not need to be connected to a power source, according to the report which states that 300 Google employees are currently working on the project, but “hundreds” more will reportedly be hired.

Google is not the only major tech company working on AR wearable technology — Apple is reportedly working on its own mixed reality headset that could arrive in 2023, while Facebook is also tipped to launch its headset later this year as part of ‘Project Cambria’. However, Google’s AR headset is tipped to launch after both competitors and could arrive in 2024, according to the report.

Meanwhile, a recent report suggests that Apple’s upcoming mixed-reality headset may be delayed to 2023. The company’s AR/ VR headset, which is codenamed N301, has been in development since 2015. It was previously expected to launch in 2021, with availability this year. However, according to Bloomberg, Apple could push the launch to the end of 2022 — the headset could be available by 2023, and Apple is considering a price point higher than $2,000 (roughly Rs. 1,49,000) according to the report.


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