Google might have stopped daydreaming of making its Daydream VR headsets and Google Glass a success, but it appears like the company has not entirely given up on its headgear ambitions. According to a new report from The Verge, citing two people familiar with the matter, Google is working on an AR headset behind the scenes.
Google’s Project Iris AR Headset
Codenamed Project Iris, Google is reportedly planning to ship its AR headsets sometime in 2024. The AR headset is said to come with outward-facing cameras for the video feed input. Current prototypes of the headset resemble a pair of ski goggles. Notably, the headset doesn’t require a tethered connection to an external power source.
According to the report, the alleged AR headset would feature a custom Google processor. The company will likely utilize its data centers to process graphics and sync that to the headset through the internet. Could Google market it as Tensor chip under Pixel branding? We will have to wait to find out. What we know right now is that Pixel’s team is involved in the development of a few hardware parts.
Furthermore, the headset may run on Android. Meanwhile, according to a report from 9to5Google, Google has been hiring for a mysterious “Augmented Reality OS” too.
Clay Bayor, the Google executive that manages Project Starline, is reportedly in charge of Project Iris. The team responsible for Project Iris currently consists of roughly 300 people. It includes Google Assistant creator Scott Huffman, Google AR operating systems senior director Mark Lucovsky, ARCore manager Shahram Izadi, and former light-field camera startup Lytro CTO Kurt Akeley.
Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai mentioned last October that AR will be a “major area of investment” for the company. Alongside Google, the Cupertino ain’t Apple is working on a mixed reality headset, while Meta is gearing up to launch its Project Cambria standalone VR headset.