Nreal has teased at a headset that they plan on releasing for enterprise-focused customers. This headset is set to directly compete with the Hololens 2, one of the only competent AR headsets for the military and large companies. This Nreal headset is a variant of the Nreal Light consumer headset, but will have some obvious upgrades.
When this enterprise AR headset releases, it will only be Nreal’s second product. The first, the Nreal Light, is a consumer AR headset that was slated to launch in fall of 2019. It didn’t, and was scheduled for a 2020 spring release. Thanks to the COVID-19 scare, that has even pushed back. The company has yet to make an announcement about the availability of the upcoming AR headset.
Unlike the Nreal Light, the new all-in-one enterprise AR headset would be untethered and have an internal chip responsible for all compute responsibilities. Rather than plugging your headset into your work phone or an external box, high-end users can simply turn the headset on and have the ability to collaborate in real time.
From the sketches that the company have released, it seems as though the computing system will also act as the counterweight on the back of the headset.
Nreal is following the same path of the Magic Leap, which went consumers to high-end, rather than high-end to consumers. It is an interesting strategy, and one that has yet to be proven inside of the mixed reality industry. Some of the companies that in best position to have a virtual monopoly over the virtual world are the ones that focused on getting to enterprise-level users before anything else.
Nreal wants a piece of the big-paying pie, but does it have the chops to compete? When it comes to hardware, there is growing confidence that the headset can be fully self-contained. A reliable battery is more than possible, and a controller for controlling your world is likely. As for the software, there’s still questions. Nreal hasn’t given the consumers exactly what they want. They’ve given us a good taste, but nothing that seems that it could please the most sophisticated users.
As for the price point, they have aspirations of being “competitive.” It will be higher than the consumer Nreal Light, but there hasn’t been a number attached for the upcoming headset yet. The Light itself is priced at $1,200, the Hololens 2 is priced at $3,500, and the Magic Leap is priced at $3,000.
We will likely get more details trickled down from the company in the coming weeks and months. For more VR and AR news, make sure to check back at VRGear.com.