Apple's XR Headset will Reportedly introduce a new Proprietary Charging Connector
Bloomberg’s Gurman reported back in early 2023 that Apple’s forthcoming mixed-reality headset would feature an external power supply. Apple reportedly made the decision to offload the battery as they were concerned about the device overheating. Making the headset lighter was another factor.
Apple’s headset will have a new proprietary charging connector. One of the device’s more surprising design elements is the use of an external battery that rests in a user’s pocket and connects via cable. Apple made that choice to reduce weight and improve comfort. I wrote about the move a few months ago but can now share some additional details about how the system works.
The headset will have two ports: a USB-C connector to handle data and a new proprietary charger. The charging cable that goes into the headset has a round tip that inserts magnetically. In order to prevent the connector from falling out during use, you rotate it clockwise to lock it in. The cable itself connects to the battery pack, and those two pieces aren’t separable.
The pack, which should power the headset for about two hours, looks like Apple’s iPhone MagSafe battery pack. It’s about the size of an iPhone but thicker. The pack is designed to be charged via USB-C and will be powered up using the same adapter included with the MacBook Pro. Given the short battery life — likely due to the use of an M2 chip and dual 4K displays — I’d imagine Apple will offer the ability to buy extra packs. Source.
In 2021, the EU Commission decided that all smartphones, digital devices and chargers had to use USB-C by 2023. That would seem to put Apple's new propriety charging connector into the EU Commission's crosshairs. Then again, Apple may decide to limit the sales of its first XR Headset to countries other than Europe. We're likely to know more about this during Apple's introduction of the new device in June.