Some more information about Apple’s rumoured Mixed Reality headset has hit the web, thanks to analyst Ming Chi Kuo. In a new report by Kuo, it has been mentioned that Apple may adopt a hybrid Fresnel lens design for its mixed reality headset. This is supposed to improve optical performance in addition to delivering a broad field of view. It is also said to keep the weight of the headset under 150 grams.
Kuo adds (via macrumors) that the usage of Fresnel lenses is not new. These were invented some 200 years ago and are being used in several headsets already. However, these headsets have a bulky footprint and weigh around 300-400 grams. But in Apple’s case, the Mixed Reality headset, which is supposed to launch next year, may have a lightweight design with smaller field of view (FOV) as they don’t require a more immersive experience as what is there in true virtual reality headsets.
The hybrid Fresnel lens that is said to be used in Apple’s unannounced Mixed Reality headset, is said to be composed of three stacked Fresnel lenses so it can achieve a thin and light design. Each headset is said to use a total of six Fresnel lenses (three per eye) along with lightweight plastic lenses.
“The purpose of this design is to improve FOV and reduce weight and thickness. We believe that Apple will use a hybrid Fresnel lens design further to enhance the Fresnel lens's optical performance (e.g., improve vignetting and optical artifacts), and each hybrid Fresnel lens comprises three stacked Fresnel lenses.We believe that Apple's design will achieve a better balance between HMD’s FOV and form factor,” said the report.
The lenses might be supplied by Young Optics and won’t be cheap. This may also result in the headsets getting a high overall price tag.
Apple reportedly has multiple Mixed Reality headsets under works and the first one is said to arrive in mid 2022. An augmented reality headset is also rumoured for 2025.
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