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Apple is preparing augmented reality glasses developed with metalens technology, with which it hopes to replace plastic lenses, and which it would launch in 2026 or 2027, “at the earliest.”
The company will hold its World Developers Conference (WWDC) next June, from the 5th to the 9th, an event in which it will present the latest news on its operating systems (iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS) and services.
According to remarks made by Bloomberg analyst Mark Gurman in February, it is anticipated that the company would unveil its mixed reality headgear as one of the novelties that will be introduced this year. This comes after the company experienced a number of setbacks in the launch of its product due to challenges in the device’s development.
Shortly before, fellow analyst Ming Chi-Kuo commented that this product would arrive later than expected by the technology company because it still had bugs in its “software.”
Also during this time, there has been talking that the American manufacturer is working on a cheaper version of the viewer, which will be presented in 2024 or early 2025, equipped with components from its iPhones.
Now, Kuo has made the observation that the producer is working on another model, which the analyst has referred to as Apple Glasses, with which it hopes to satisfy three goals that the firm has.
On the one hand, to reduce dependence on existing plastic lenses, take advantage of technological advantages and facilitate the use of metalens technology.
According to Kuo, the glasses that incorporate this technology, which would not reach the mixed reality viewer, will begin to be mass-produced in 2026 or 2027 “at the earliest,” but he has not anticipated that the firm will release information about them inside the framework of the WWDC conference.
According to the analyst, the supply chain is projected to begin mass-developing goods with this technology in 2024, and he anticipates that it would “replace the plastic lens of the Face ID TX iPad.” This information was provided as a result of the previous statement.
However, he has pointed out that, taking into account the manufacturing processes of these components, metal lenses could replace the current low-end ones between 2028 and 2030. Additionally, he has forecasted that “within the next few years, metal lenses will gradually replace the existing plastic ones in 3D applications.”
This is Apple’s Commitment to Sustainability
On the afternoon of this Thursday, April 13, it was learned that Apple announced that, starting in 2025, some components of its products will be made with 100 percent recycled materials, such as batteries, which will be created with reused cobalt, with a view to “protecting the planet.”
In this sense, the company led by Tim Cook advances in its intention to contribute to improving the environment with its commitment to increasing the use of recycled materials in all its products. To do this, it will include changes in the batteries of its devices, as well as in the magnets and printed circuit boards of its own design, as it has announced in a statement.
According to the technology, cobalt is a “fundamental” material for the creation of batteries since it enables “a high energy density” while also meeting the standards of endurance and safety. This makes cobalt an ideal candidate for use in battery production.Therefore, the use of this material represents a significant part of the company’s products, both in iPhones and iPads, MacBooks, and the Apple Watch.
Given this, Apple pointed out that, for the last three years, it has already been introducing the use of recycled cobalt in its self-designed batteries. Specifically, during the past year, it already achieved that a quarter of the cobalt used in its products came from recycled material. Now, the forecast for 2025 is that 100 percent of the cobalt used will be recycled.
Following this line, the American company also wants to ensure that the use of rare earth elements in its components is 100 percent recycled by 2025. Because of this, Apple started using recycled rare earth elements in the Taptic Engine of the iPhone 11, which is responsible for regulating the vibrations of the device. This was done as a result of the Taptic Engine.
Since then, the use of this recycled material has increased in all devices, including the magnets found in the latest models, reaching 73 percent recycled material in 2022. Therefore, taking into consideration that the magnets are the component in which Apple employs rare earth, if the objective of recycling 100 percent of this material by the year 2025 is achieved, then virtually all of this material will be recycled.
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