Apple might be working on smart spectacles with Carl Zeiss

Apple's own smartglasses might even arrive earlier than expected

In an interesting move, Apple is apparently working on its own digital glasses.

According to Bloomberg, it is still in the exploration stages so we might or might not see a result. Apple could just change its mind the way it did about cars.

UPDATE 10/1/2016: According to MacRumor, Apple just might be partnering with Carl Zeiss on its upcoming smart spectacles. Blogger Robert Scoble apparently got word from a Carl Zeiss employee that Apple is working with them on augmented reality/mixed reality glasses.

Scoble's info is that the glasses will be out this year but most rumours point to the glasses only appearing in 2018 or later. Apple has made no secret of its interest in augmented reality, with its CEO Tim Cook confirming that Apple is investing in the technology, seeing its potential in the long run.

Will Apple do a better job with the tech than Google did with its controversial Glass, that ended up being shelved before it went to market? We'll see if Apple can win the AR war.


AR a possibility

If the device does come to fruition, it would likely connect wirelessly to iPhones and might use augmented reality beside showing images and other information within the scope of the wearer's field of vision.

Apple has already started discussions with potential suppliers and as part of the testing phase, ordered near-eye displays though not enough to indicate mass production is happening.

Just don't expect the device to show up next year - the earliest you can expect it is perhaps 2018 and Apple has a reputation of experimenting in private, testing new products but ultimately deciding not to bring them to market.

Seeing that Apple has invested in AR via its purchase of PrimeSense, a company that developed the Kinect's motion-sensing tech, the future for the glasses looks promising. It could be a classic Apple move: wait for the competition to take early steps into a technology and then somehow present a better, more interesting alternative - the way it has with the iPad.

It's likely that Apple is still waiting on the tech to improve as technological limitations had stymied the progress of Google's eventually-dropped Google Glass. Will Apple do another "we can do it better, we'll just do it later" with the digital glasses? We'll have to wait and see.

In the meantime the company is apparently also working on creating an edge-to-edge display for the next iPhone: think its own version of Xiaomi's Mi Mix display, that will be almost bezel-less. Rumours are also that the next iPhone could also be one of of the company's biggest yet, perhaps trying to provide an alternative to the current crop of Android phablets. Now that's definitely something to look forward to in 2017.

[Source:Bloomberg via 9to5Mac]