Apple's headset launch: Cook's gamble or genius?

Onur Demirkol
Mar 13, 2023

According to a report, Apple designers didn't want to release the new headset this year, but Tim Cook ordered the launch despite all the opposition from his team.

Apple is looking to release its first-generation mixed-reality headset this year. Financial Times reported that Apple's industrial design team defended it too early to launch the new headset, and the company must wait until a lighter version is produced. According to MacRumors, the operations team had different thoughts. They wanted to launch an early product version "in the form of a VR-focused ski goggle-like headset that allows users to watch 3D videos and perform interactive workouts, or make FaceTime calls with virtual avatars."

Apple is working to widen its product span with the new VR headset and more information on the second-generation product is revealed.

Tim Cook sides with Jeff Williams

Tim Cook, the company's CEO, sided with Jeff Williams on this matter. Williams is the chief operations officer of Apple; in other words, he is leading the operations team that had early-launch plans. Interestingly, Tim Cook was the COO of the company before getting promoted to the head title, and Apple fans hope that his guts are coming from his experience. Former engineers described the occasion as "huge pressure to ship," the Financial Times report included.

Apple has spent many years trying to launch the mixed-reality headset. If it succeeds, it will be added to Tim Cook's legacy. It might be one of the reasons that the CEO is pushing his teams to launch it as soon as possible. Of course, there might also be other tactical strategies surrounding his head.

MacRumors' report stated that Apple is looking to sell around a million headset units, which is expected to be priced at approximately $3,000. However, it will be the first mixed-reality headset of the company, and leaks showed that there will be cheaper models in 2025. Moreover, it is expected to run on is own and don't need an iPhone to use.

Apple's headset is expected to be introduced at WWDC in June.


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