The prominent Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has released a new report that suggests that Apple’s anticipated VR headset will come with eye-tracking technology. VR headsets use eye-tracking to deliver a smoother user experience, and to provide users with contextual feedback based on what they are looking at.
The Apple VR headset’s proposed eye-tracking system would consist of a transmitter and a receiver, and would be able to read eye movements and place images and information in the user’s line of sight. The system analyzes the changes in light reflected off the eyeball to gauge its movements over time.
Kuo noted that the feature would benefit Zhishen, which is expected to be Apple’s exclusive supplier of transmitter modules. He also indicated that the eye-tracking system could theoretically be paired with an iris recognition system, though Kuo could not confirm whether or not the final version of the headset would include iris technology. Iris recognition would enable biometric authentication for people logging into various accounts, and could even support online and in-app purchases if integrated with Apple Pay.
The system that Kuo describes in his report is quite similar to one that was detailed in an Apple patent application that was published in September. Other patent applications have combined eye-tracking with facial recognition for authentication, and blurred out parts of the screen when the user’s eyes are elsewhere.
The Apple VR headset is expected to hit store shelves in 2022, and could retail for anywhere between $1000 and $3000.