Apple's headset could be a 'one more thing' at WWDC and not a finished product

Not a single leaked image of the Apple Reality Pro headset makes me think we won't see a final product at WWDC

Tim Cook presenting during an Apple keynote, on black background, with multicoloured Apple logo beside him
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Apple's WWDC 2023 event is now just hours away and all the speculation is to whether we will finally see the long-awaited VR headset, expected to be called the Apple Reality Pro, or Reality One. There's also talk of some Mac hardware, in the form of a MacBook Air and of course, the details on iOS 17, WatchOS 10 and Mac OS... whatever name we get next. 

While I would be shocked if we don't hear about the new headset at WWDC 2023, I don't expect to see a final product. In fact, I don't think we'll see a final product in 2023. As much as I hope I'm wrong, here's why...

Apple VR concept

We've only ever seen concept images of an Apple headset

(Image credit: Antonio de Rosa)

Firstly, there hasn't been a single leaked image of the headset, despite the fact that we pretty much know it exists, and people within Apple have used it. If a final product was out there, it would be very difficult to get this far without some glimpse of it in use. If there is a final product, hats off to Apple for the watertight secrecy.

Second, this is a new platform – expected to be called RealityOS – and therefore will require new apps. Yes, there will be native Apple apps that will be ready whenever Apple launches it, and some existing VR content could be adapted from versions created for the Meta Quest and PlayStation VR platforms, but it will take time and effort to get a decent library together.

Of course, WWDC is a developers' conference, first and foremost, so it makes perfect sense to show the platform to the developers here, so they know what they are building for, but they can't do it instantly. Could we see content ready in six months? Maybe, but I feel like it is more likely to be into 2024 before there's enough that ready to go.

Maybe Apple will surprise us all, but my best guess right now is that we will see the bare bones of a system and a product, with a lot of details to follow. As we did with the Mac Pro. All will be revealed tonight.

Mat Gallagher

As T3's Editor-in-Chief, Mat Gallagher has his finger on the pulse for the latest advances in technology. He has written about technology since 2003 and after stints in Beijing, Hong Kong and Chicago is now based in the UK. He’s a true lover of gadgets, but especially anything that involves cameras, Apple, electric cars, musical instruments or travel.