Apple is hosting what promises to be its big iPhone 13 event today. While we’re once again holding out hope for that ‘one more thing’ to see if the company reveals anything about its upcoming AR or VR wearables, it seems a supply chain rumor contends that Apple’s alleged VR headset may be gearing up to sport a microOLED display with a pretty high pixel density.
Apple has a tight reign on internal leaks, which typically force tech pundits to look at the greater supply chain to get an idea of where the Cupertino tech giant is headed next. That typically also means you’ll have to take whatever pops out of those rumors with a big grain of salt.
Just this year multiple reports have maintained that Apple’s long-rumored VR headset may arrive as early as 2022, cost $3,000, and include limited AR capabilities, something that’s said to act as a precursor to a full-fledged AR device.
Korean publication The Elec is now reporting that Apple has requested a sample of a display component called a fine metal mask (FMM) from the South Korean company APS Holdings, something that’s used for depositing organic RGB material onto OLED displays. The type allegedly requested by Apple is supposed to reach a pixel density of 3,000ppi.
It’s not unusual for micro displays to features pixel densities of that size, so the notable bit here is Apple may be looking to maintain a slim and light profile for its VR headset, which may depart from the high resolution smartphone-size displays used in current consumer VR headsets.
Apple intends on testing the FMM sample, and then forming a more concrete plant for the VR device’s development, The Elec maintains in its report.
Japan’s Dai Nippon Printing is widely considered the number one manufacture of the sort of FMM (Gen 6) reportedly requested by Apple, however these are produced using a process called ‘wet etching’. It’s thought that Apple instead wanted a laser patterning FMM from ABS Holding, as laser drilling the holes “will make 3000ppi more achievable,” The Elec reports.
We’ll be watching the Apple event today and keeping our eyes peeled for AR/VR news. You can follow along live here on YouTube.