Apple’s Chinese Partner to Help Develop AR Headset; Sony, TSMC to Make Micro OLED Displays for Device: Report

Apple’s Chinese contract manufacturer Luxshare Precision Industry Co Ltd will help develop the iPhone maker’s long-awaited augmented reality (AR) device, Nikkei Asia reported on Thursday.

Luxshare has taken over the AR development team in Shanghai, previously owned by Taiwan’s Pegatron, the first to help Apple develop the device, the report said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Taiwan-based Foxconn is also helping with the project, Nikkei said, and Apple has tapped two of its most important suppliers, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co and Sony, to develop micro OLED displays for the device.

The iPhone maker, Luxshare Precision, Foxconn, TSMC and Sony did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment.

Apple’s headset is set to cost around $3,000 (roughly Rs. 2,48,000) and will be launched in this year’s spring event, Bloomberg previously reported.

The company hopes to reduce the price for the second generation of the device, Nikkei said.

The device will compete with the likes of Meta Platforms’ Quest Pro virtual and mixed-reality headset launched late last year at $1,500 (roughly Rs. 1,24,000).

Last month, Foxconn, the world’s largest contract electronics maker, said that output at its iPhone plant in China had “basically returned to normal” and December revenue, down 12.3 percent year-on-year, marked the start of a recovery.

Production of Apple iPhone models faced disruption ahead of Christmas and January’s Lunar New Year holidays, after curbs to control COVID-19 prompted thousands of workers to leave Foxconn’s factory lines in China’s Zhengzhou city.

Although lower compared with the previous year, the company said revenue for December was better than it expected and that a “gradual recovery” at its Zhengzhou plant had contributed to “double-digit growth” in revenue for its smart consumer electronics business compared to November.

Analysts say Foxconn assembles around 70 percent of iPhone models, and the Zhengzhou plant produces the majority of its premium models including iPhone 14 Pro.

© Thomson Reuters 2023

Apple launched the iPad Pro (2022) and the iPad (2022) alongside the new Apple TV this week. We discuss the company’s latest products, along with our review of the iPhone 14 Pro on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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