Apple VR rival welcomes the competition it will bring

Meta Quest 2
(Image credit: Future / iMore)

Apple is very much expected to enter the mixed-reality headset market before 2023 draws to a close. And while some might expect the competition to be running scared, that isn't the case. At least, not for HTC.

HTC is perhaps one of the biggest players already entrenched in that same market, but CEO and co-founder Cher Wang isn't worried about Apple's arrival. In fact, she thinks that the so-called Reality Pro headset will be a boon for business.

Wang also says that she expects Apple to release its headset in the second half of 2023, adding that the middle of the year is the earliest it's likely to arrive.

Augmented sales

Wang was speaking with CNBC during last week's Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona, Spain. And while HTC and its Vive headset could be squarely in Apple's crosshairs, the CEO isn't worried.

Wang goes on to say that Apple's entry into the space is just vindication that it's doing something right. “It’s really proven that our direction is correct,” Want told CNBC. “Competition is always good.”

It's thought that with Apple and other companies joining the fray, the overall mixed reality headset market will be legitimized, increasing interest and sales as a result.

Not that the two companies are likely to be in direct competition. Not initially, anyway. Apple is expected to sell the Reality Pro for at least $3,000 whereas HTC's new XR Elite is considerably cheaper — just $1099

Thankfully given the high price, the Reality Pro isn't expected to be tethered, meaning you won't need to buy the best iPhone Apple makes just to use it. Or any iPhone, for that matter.

Apple is reported to be working on a cheaper version of its headset, too. It's thought to be a little ways off from being ready, but a price of around $1500 does seem more reasonable at least.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.