The rumored VR headset from Apple has its competitors on edge.

At its next Worldwide Developers Conference, the corporation could reveal a highly anticipated VR headgear, which could legitimize the efforts of other businesses in the sector.

Competitors are in a frenzy as a result of rumors that Apple will reveal a virtual reality headset on Monday at its Worldwide Developers Conference. On Thursday, Meta unveiled their brand-new Meta Quest 3. The most recent ThinkReality VRX headset was produced by Lenovo. A small market that was having trouble drawing in a sizable audience is now receiving a lot more attention.

Apple’s anticipated entry into the virtual reality space will occur at a time when device sales and enthusiasm in the metaverse concept as a whole are lagging. Even when the general public lost interest, some businesses, such as Meta, made significant investments in the concept. Apple has avoided the metaverse, but speculation about its VR and AR aspirations has always been present. Apple may no longer outperform rivals but rather support their ideas and spur additional technological advancements and applications.

According to George Jijiashvili, chief analyst at tech research and consultancy firm Omdia, “it’s going to be a validation that this really is going to be the next chapter of technology and how we interact with it and consume it.” “It will serve as a product that everyone looks up to if they pull it off in terms of making that headset really compelling and having actually useful apps and functions.”

But the industry is currently having trouble. During the period of early 2022 to early 2023, the market for VR and AR headsets had a 54 percent fall, according to statistics from market intelligence company International statistics Corporation. According to reports, more than half of buyers of Meta headsets gave them up within six months. The launch of Apple may actually aid competitors in rising above such lows. Its introduction “brings a lot of attention to the market,” according to Jitesh Urbani, an IDC research manager. It aids in user education. Exactly that is what Apple excels at.

Apple has a reputation for releasing hardware that isn’t really innovative yet ends up ruling the market. The iPhone supplanted the BlackBerry, making the iPod the most popular MP3 player. Making a VR or AR headset in a specialized market is riskier. Apple has hinted that a big event is coming, saying that “a new era” will start on Monday and that there may be an opportunity to “code new worlds” in the near future. The Apple Watch, which popularized smartwatches and currently controls the market, was the company’s most recent significant hardware launch.

A $3,000 headgear with premium screens, eye- and hand-tracking, and a separate battery pack is allegedly in the works by Apple. With an increase in computing power and a smaller design, Meta is revamping its Quest. This fall, it will be offered for $500. This weekend, the business will also reduce the starting price of its older Quest model by $100 to $300. If Apple’s speculated pricing point is accurate, it won’t initially be a rival in the gaming industry and will probably entice business and developer clients instead. Lenovo’s headset falls somewhere in the middle, with a $1,300 price point.

Other rivals’ goals and prices differ. With an emphasis on business clients, AR firm Magic Leap introduced a second headset last year for about $3,300. According to reports, the business and Meta are discussing a partnership for augmented reality. Also available is Sony’s PSVR 2, which debuted this year and costs $550.

Getting people interested in VR outside of games is a challenge. People are put off by an expensive equipment that is unnecessary. However, Jijiashvili claims that more software developers may start to invest money and increase the uses for headsets now that Apple is in the game. However, the manufacturer must also make sure that the headgear is comfortable and not overly invasive for the user.

It’s possible that an Apple headset won’t appeal to a large audience until its price reduces and it develops a portfolio of standout virtual reality applications. However, now is the time for people to focus their attention back on VR and see how potential applications outside of gaming may start to take shape. Harmeet Singh Walia, a senior analyst at technology research firm Counterpoint Research, believes that Meta’s cheaper price should help it to maintain its market domination for the time being. The Apple headset is too expensive to become an overnight sensation, even if it can dazzle. It won’t be an iPhone moment, he predicts, but “I’m expecting something special.”

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