Apple's AR Headset Supply Chain is steadily Growing with new Suppliers being Revealed
We reported yesterday that a Ming-Chi Kuo report pointed to Apple's first AR headset would arrive in Q2 2022 and that Yujingguang would be a key lens supplier and produce up to 50% of Apple's orders for VR lenses. Looking back, that news was first revealed back in a February report covering a JP Morgan analyst Yang Weilun.
The JP Morgan analyst stated that TSMC would provide application processors, Largan and Jin Guoguang for camera lenses, Yujingguang and Yangmingguang for VR lenses, Pegatron for assembly, and panel stickers. Combined GIS-KY.
Today, a new supply chain report from Taiwan sheds a little more light on other suppliers that may be a part of Apple's AR headset device. The report noted that Jin Guoguang had doubled its capital expenditure last year in response to new customer orders that is believed to be have come from Apple. The same was true for Yujingguang's expenditure of 7 billion yuan (1.1 billion US) that is mainly to support the needs for Apple's headset lenses.
The interesting part of the Taiwanese report is the acknowledgement that "eye tracking system is the most important new human-machine interface technology for head-mounted devices. It is mainly used to identify hand movements [in-air gestures], depth sensing, and calculate the relative position of objects. It can provide consumers with a smooth user experience. The device must have detection to measure eye movement ability and provide feedback, the optical lens is the key element for these functions. It is expected that Apple is expected to launch its first VR/AR headset in 2022 at the fastest."
Eye tracking has also been a major patent theme with Apple. Patently Apple has posted four eye tracking patents just since March of this year: 01, 02, 03 and 04. The latter report specifically covered eye tracking in context with in-air micro gesturing.
Lastly, the report noted that analysts have claimed that although Apple's VR was set up in 2015, developing apps for the device has been a reason for the delay of a device. The report noted that e-sports could be one of the apps that may make it to market, though it seemed more like a guess than a certainty.
While analysts are predicting that Apple's first AR headset will come to market sometime between Q2 and Q4, there could always be a delay. It's just the nature of the business when it comes to a first-to-market device by a company. The good news is that new and potential component suppliers are being discovered which definitely indicates that Apple's project is moving forward at a good pace.