Apple's upcoming mixed reality headset may need an iPhone connection to work

PHOTO: Apple

Apple's upcoming mixed reality headset may need to pair with an iPhone to unlock its full set of features.

Just like the Wi-Fi model of the Apple Watch, The Information claims that the mixed reality headset needs to be tethered to an iPhone for the latter device to handle the computing. As the headset has a CPU and GPU, it may still be able to function on itself with limited capabilities.

Apple has reportedly completed the development of a 5nm custom chip for the headset. There will be a total of three chipsets in the mixed reality headset, but they are not as powerful as their Mac or iOS counterparts.

They lack a neural engine for AI and machine-learning capabilities. Apple designed the three chips for wireless data transmission, compressing and decompressing videos, and maximum power efficiency.

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Work on the image sensor and display driver for the headset have been completed, but TSMC is believed to be troubleshooting some issues and trying to improve yield during trial production.

Mass production is expected to be at least a year away, but Bloomberg reported it could launch as early as 2022. The mixed reality headset is rumoured to cost around US$3,000 (S$4,030) and come with a dozen cameras for tracking hand movements.

This article was first published in Hardware Zone.