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Apple secretly working on virtual reality: report

  • Apple has a team secretly working on virtual and augmented reality
    gear in a budding challenge to Facebook-owned Oculus Rift and Microsoft
    HoloLens, the
    Financial Times reported.
  •  
  • The teams ranks number in the hundreds, bolstered by talent hired
    away from companies working on altered-reality technology and buying startups

    • Apple has a team secretly working on virtual and augmented reality
      gear in a budding challenge to Facebook-owned Oculus Rift and Microsoft
      HoloLens, the
      Financial Times reported.
    •  
    • The teams ranks number in the hundreds, bolstered by talent hired
      away from companies working on altered-reality technology and buying startups
      in the fields, according to the
      Times.
    •  
    • Apple also has a trove of patents related to technology that could be
      put to work in reality-altering gear.
    •  
    • California-based Apple has not commented on reports it is exploring
      virtual reality, but chief executive Tim Cook voiced interest while answering a
      question during a quarterly earnings call this week.
    •  
    • “I don’t think it’s a niche,” Cook said of virtual reality
      in response to a question from an analyst.
    •  
    • “I think it is really cool and has some interesting
      applications.”
    •  
    • Apple has been building headset prototypes for months, according to
      the Times.
    •  
    • Altered realities abounded at the Consumer Electronics Show
      gadget-fest in Las Vegas early this month, touching everything from sex and
      sports to sales and space exploration.
    •  
    • Virtual reality (VR) headsets immersed people in fictional worlds,
      while augmented reality (AR) eyewear overlaid digital data on the scenes around
      them.
    •  
    • Facebook-owned Oculus is taking pre-orders for its
      eagerly-anticipated Rift VR headsets at a price of $599. Rift was slated to
      begin shipping in March.
    •  
    • While video game players have been natural early targets for virtual
      reality, the technology is being put to use for education, medicine, sports,
      pornography and more.
    •  
    • Microsoft is expected to release its HoloLens augmented reality
      visors this year.
    •  
    • Unlike virtual reality which immerses people in fictional worlds,
      augmented reality makes information appear to float in the real world.
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