Apple may be nearing launch of its long-awaited XR headsets, as the company has reportedly hired Meta’s head of communications for its consumer XR products.

Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reports in his weekly ‘Power On’ newsletter that Apple has hired Andrea Schubert, Communications Director at Meta’s consumer hardware division for XR, including Portal, AR and VR devices.

Schubert has yet to comment on the report or change her employment status on LinkedIn. We’ve reached out and will update this piece when/if we receive reply.

Schubert joined Meta (then Facebook) in March 2016 for the launch of the company’s first consumer VR headset, Oculus Rift. Over the years Schubert has overseen public relations for the company spanning VR devices including Oculus Rift S, Oculus Go, Quest, and Quest 2. She’s also handled comms for all of Meta’s biggest XR events, including CES, Connect, F8, Sundance, and GDC.

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Hiring Schubert, arguably the most connected and experienced XR comms director in the field, could signal that Apple is setting up the last bits of infrastructure ahead of an XR product launch.

At this point it’s fairly clear Apple is preparing its own immersive headsets. Reports have suggested in the past that an Apple VR headset with limited AR capabilities will arrive sometime in 2022, priced at around $3,000 and sporting dual 8K displays. There’s also been talk of Apple ordering high-PPI microdisplays, suggesting the headset will have a less bulky form factor than ones that use conventional VR displays, such as Quest 2.

Apple’s alleged VR headset is said to come as a precursor to a full-fledged AR device. It’s an open secret that the company has been working on AR optics, and releasing AR headset codenames, display dimensions, and fields of view in successive versions of iOS.

In typical Apple fashion the company still hasn’t acknowledged any such claims or supposed information leaks though. We’ll be keeping our eyes peeled on Apple’s event website in 2022 for what may be the big ‘one more thing’ moment we’ve all been waiting for.

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  • Shem

    Battle of the SOCs. M1 vs XR2. In theory the M1 should blow the XR2 out of the water. Time will tell.
    I wonder what their version of Beat Saber will look like.

    • kontis

      People don’t care about socs. They care about value.
      And $300 toy with the most popular games is more acceptable for most people interested in VR (90% of them are teens) than $2000 “productivity machine” without beat saber or population one.

      XR devices will for many many years not be regarded as general purpose platforms capable of rivaling laptops or even phones due to clunkiness and all the the other interaction issues (even something as simple and important as writing text is a challenge). Advanced smartglasses that can truly replace iphone don’t need beat saber to take over the world, but Carmack said it’s technically impossible to make those currently and there is no lab in the world with a working prototype.

  • Keopsys

    Your sources… what is written on the tech news websites your read like anyone else you mean… bold mor0n

    • Well ….
      That *is* a source, is it not …??

  • Ookami

    I’m just sitting here wondering why the Apple in the banner has the TikTok filter.

  • ApocalypseShadow

    Not being an Apple guy, Apple joining the party and doing well, can only help solidify AR/VR as standard if they can bring the content and ease of use to the community.

    And, instead of throwing rumored high prices around incessantly across these VR sites without confirmation, Apple can, and has done before, prices that were reasonable on consumer’s wallets. I seem to remember iPods not costing an arm and a leg as I bought one for a gift in the past. I believe Apple knows that in order to enter the market successfully, they need to have a price that’s affordable and content to drive it.

    Let’s just wait and see what they do. If they do it right, we all as VR users will benefit from the backing of a major player. Maybe get Microsoft and Amazon into it. Might even get Google back into it. Which would guarantee VR being permanent. That is where the true fun begins as they compete for our time and money.

    • Jistuce

      Remember, the iPods came out at a time when Apple was a minor player in the tech industry and had been teetering on the verge of bankruptcy for several years. At this point Apple is a luxury brand, and prices accordingly.

      • ApocalypseShadow

        The point I was making is that we have no proof what it will cost. So, there’s no point in repeating an imaginary number.

        No one is going to say Cambria is $1000 without substantiated fact. No one is going to say the rumored tech in PSVR 2 with eye tracking will make it $1000. Why is there a repeat that Apple is rumored to sell theirs for $3000 or $1000? Almost as if to make a current, subsidized headset look cheaper. Almost like sabotage before the final product and price is shown.

        We should let them announce it, let them announce the price, then debate its worth. That makes more sense to me when facts are verified.

        • Blaexe

          Why is there a repeat that Apple is rumored to sell theirs for $3000 or $1000?

          To answer your question: Because it was reported that way. On the other hand, we’ve had no reports about Cambrias or PSVR2 yet.

          • ApocalypseShadow

            A rumor was reported. Then passed around VR sites. No verification. It could very well be $5,000, $10,000. Or it could be $500. It’s best to just find out. Then we decide if the price is worth the features, quality and content they are providing.

            Not saying it will be cheap. It’s Apple. Lol. But I don’t know. And no one else does either.

          • Blaexe

            Not a rumor, no. It was an insider report. That’s a big difference.

          • ApocalypseShadow

            A rumor. Many “inside reports” turn out to be inaccurate. Or the company changed their strategy and pricing before launch.

            I’d rather have facts than a rumor.

          • Blaexe

            I literally just answered your question.

            There was an inside source making statements about the price point of Apples XR headset. There were none for PSVR2 or Cambria. That’s the difference. Not sure why you continue arguing.

          • ApocalypseShadow

            Because there are gamers like you who are holding onto an inside report as fact. It’s rumor. If you want to continue to believe a rumor, be my guest.

            When it turns into a FACT, let me know. I mentioned Cambria and PSVR 2 because there are no prices known. No rumored price to spread or make up. Apple’s headset is not on the market. So, any price continued to be quoted is FALSE. Or unsubstantiated. I’m surprised you’re not getting it. As if you know or can vouch for this insider.

        • Jistuce

          If they don’t price it as a luxury product, I’ll eat my hat.

      • mappo

        From iPods to EyePods

      • guest

        Steve Jobs was the only one that could put the company on a death march like that. Today their app store people would make it impossible for a new product line disrupt their installed base. Those companies are now run by careerist suckups that only care about their short term bucks!

        • Jistuce

          Eh, Steve Jobs was a salesman more than anything else. A damn good one, but he was no inventor. He wasn’t an electrical engineer, a programmer, a designer, anybody that MAKES things. He wasn’t a visionary that saw unimagined products and told people to fill the hole in the market, either.
          The iPod wasn’t his idea, the iconic design wasn’t from him. The iPod wasn’t the first or the best. But what it WAS was heavily-advertised in mainstream media instead of tech outlets. Apple had access to an entire market that didn’t KNOW there were other MP3 players, and that the other manufacturers had assumed wouldn’t WANT MP3 players. THAT was Jobs’s contribution. The idea to sell it to “normal people” instead of computer nerds.

    • guest

      That duopoly is just poaching meta talent to prevent any potential threats to their existing biz and are not capable of launching any AR device themselves, even with their trillions. Their internal divisions will make sure of that!

      • Bella Mitchell

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      • Mila Wilson

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  • Geogaddi

    While I always root for a good underdog, I guess the fact is that only the biggest players can really compete with Meta (and maybe Sony) in terms of tech, infrastructure and price at this point.

    So I hope Apple is successful with their headset, and maybe we’ll see Microsoft and others explore VR/AR in time.

    • kool

      I think Microsoft will go the 3rd party route with pcvr compatibility coming to xbox.

  • Arturs Gerskovics

    you upvote your own comments?

    • Keopsys

      He does…
      That’s the only way he found to get some sort of approval… sad.

  • JakeDunnegan

    BWAHAHAHA – is this an April Fool’s joke?

    Apple has a death wish or something? Can anyone think of a worse branding blunder than “Facebook becomes Meta” since “New Coke”??

    (Linking here for you youngins who may have never heard of “New Coke”). ;)

    https://www.coca-colacompany.com/news/the-infamous-1985-launch-of-new-coke

    • Lhorkan

      Either this, or Schubert is switching sides because the brand change was pushed through against their will? Not sure if we’ll ever know for sure. Either way, the Meta Quest rebrand is indeed one hell of a shoddy job, as seen by everyone still calling it “the oculus”.

      • guest

        Companies usually change names when they’ve expended all their credibility. Telecoms do it all the time because their brands get hated too much. I still associate Oculus with the only headsets that ever made me sick and Facebook I associate with politics, so with Meta perhaps they are going to improve themselves, or maybe not…

        • Jonathan Winters III

          This is most likely the reason. Still, they should have called it Oculus Quest, period. Not Meta Quest. Totally confusing, as the Oculus.com website and Social media accounts aren’t going to be abandoned any time soon.

  • ApocalypseShadow

    Telling gamers to wait for an actual announcement and price instead of believing a rumored $3000 is anti Apple?

    You must not read very well. Try looking at it again.

  • Jonathan Winters III

    Apple is not known for their “affordable” pricing. They will not catch up with Meta any time soon, if at all. Both in pricing, and privacy. I wouldn’t buy a headset from Apple, who bot snoop on peoples devices/photos etc.

  • Jistuce

    You’re leaving?! HOORAY!

  • kool

    Your forgetting sony and Nintendo. The psvr2 will be huge when it drops. I think all these companies will have a walled off pseudo metaverse, but a 3rd party cross platform free app will be the metaverse we go to and whatever hmd isn’t compatible with it will fall behind (except Nintendo which always has been walled off).