Report: Apple Recruits Hollywood Directors For VR/AR Headset

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Rumor has it the company may also be working on VR FaceTime.

According to The New York Times, Apple is enlisting the help of the Hollywood elite to help bolster its catalog of immersive content for its long-rumored VR/AR headset. This will supposedly include mysterious video content from celebrated director Jon Favreau (The Lion King, Ironman, The Mandalorian).

Citing three people close to the project, the publication claims that Favreau is developing original content for the mixed reality device based on Apple TV+’s new “documentary” series, Prehistoric Planet, for which Favreau serves as executive producer. According to sources, this mixed reality content will be available next year when Apple’s VR/AR headset launches sometime in 2023.

Credit: John Salangsang / Shutterstock

While Apple has yet to confirm or deny these reports, it’s worth noting that Favreau has a history of using immersive technology as part of his filmmaking process. Back in 2019, we talked about how the star director used VR technology to create and preview virtual environments for his 2019 remake of The Lion King. That being said, it would make sense for Apple to seek the help of Favreau in developing immersive content.

According to Mark Gurman, Bloomberg’s official Apple reporter, the company’s VR/AR headset and RealityOS platform is just the tip of the metaphorical iceberg. In addition to the long-rumored hardware, Gurman claims that the company is also working on VR integration for FaceTime, Apple Maps, and a variety of other apps.

Director Jon Favreau and his team immersed within their virtual set. / Credit: Wired

“While third-party apps are a key ingredient of this project, Apple is also planning a slew of its own apps,” says Gurman in his report. “That includes a VR version of FaceTime that can scan a person’s face to replicate their movements in a Memoji, a new VR version of Maps, and rOS variants of core Apple apps like Notes and Calendar. Also in the works is a way for the headset to extend a Mac’s display, bringing it into 3D.”

This past week rumors began circulating about the potential reveal of Apple’s combination VR/AR headset and “Reality Operating System” during the company’s annual WWDC developer conference. Unfortunately, the event came and went with no mention of VR or AR, let alone the highly-anticipated mixed reality device. That said, we did learn about a new MacBook Air as well as several exciting software updates for a variety of iOS devices.

Here’s hoping we learn more about Apple’s VR/AR device in the coming months.

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