Apple Could Delay Mass Production of Mixed-Reality Headset

BY Dave Johnson

Published 30 Mar 2023

Apple Mixed Reality Pro Headset

A recent report from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests that Apple has pushed back the mass production of its Mixed-Reality headset yet again. 

In January, Kuo claimed that Apple’s Mixed-Reality headset might face delays due to issues with mechanical component drop testing and software development tools. The analyst then predicted a Spring announcement or the 2023 World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC). 

Indeed, various tech reviewers and leakers indicate that Apple will introduce its first Mixed-Reality headset during the event. However, a new report suggests otherwise. 

In a recent tweet, Kuo says that Apple isn’t optimistic that the Mixed-Reality headset was compelling enough to create an “iPhone moment.” So, the tech giant has reportedly decided to push the mass production schedule to the mid or end of 2023’s third quarter. 

Meanwhile, Apple already announced that the WWDC 2023 would be between June 5 and 9. So, it’s unlikely that the new headset will appear at the event. 

“The delay also adds uncertainty to whether the new device will appear at WWDC 2023, as the market widely expects,” says Kuo. 

So let’s explore the reported reason. 

Why Apple is Pushing Back Mass Production of Mixed-Reality Headset Again

According to Kuo, Apple’s delay in mass producing the headset is due to probable poor market feedback. That’s because several factors could catalyze a lukewarm market response to the Mixed-Reality headset — from the current economic downturn to hardware specification compromises. 

Other possible reasons for the anticipated poor feedback are the readiness of the VR/AR ecosystem and application and its high selling price. As Kuo points out, the Mixed-Reality headset could cost between $3,000 and $4,000. 

The mass production delay has also changed the device’s forecast. 

Earlier in the year, analysts predicted that Apple could ship over half a million Mixed-Reality headset units in 2023. However, the expectation is now significantly lower, hovering between 200,000 and 300,000 units.