Between purchases, recruitment, patent applications, and insider reports, all indications suggest that Apple is developing a Smartglass product that could be delivered by 2020, but the company has not officially endorsed such plans.
Apple currently has 21 vacancies positions mentioning Augmented Reality, but two positions in particular indicate that the company is feverishly working on an AR headset.
Apple is currently seeking a 3D UI framework technician for its Technology Development Group Virtual Reality technologies, namely ARKit and Metal 2. Qualified candidates should have five years of experience in software development, familiarity with "developer-oriented frameworks or libraries" and "latency-critical, interactive, UI software" and … have some experience set of skills.
"They will be working with some of Apple's most advanced technologies, including support for Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) offered in ARKit and Me tal 2," the list goes on. "We work closely with the human interface and internal customer developers to define and deliver the foundation for the next paradigm of user interfaces and completely new interaction models."
This job description refers to the ongoing work on Apple Smartglasses. While the engineer would primarily work with the existing products, there are "internal customers" for other departments within the company, which might include the hardware and software teams working on smartglasses, such as product design. In addition, ARKit is based on the established interfaces and models, while Smartglasses enable new interaction methods such as eye tracking, hand gestures and even brain control.
Speaking of Product Design, Another Listing for a Program Manager It seems like referring to the previously unannounced product without mentioning Augmented Reality.
"Mac … iPod … iPhone … iPad … [Apple] WATCH … what's next? In this role, you'll join a team of talented engineers, program managers, focusing on managing, Prioritize and execute day-to-day activities to meet the overall program objectives of Apple's next-generation product design team, "the listing said.
I doubt they'll talk about a toaster. But the HomePod must feel excluded from the appeal.
The remaining positions seem more directly related to the development of ARKit. Seven of them refer to new or upcoming products or "groundbreaking new products" in the case of the AR / VR software engineer, but that could refer to future iPhones. (A listing for product architect at Apple Maps mentions augmented reality among innovative technologies in digital mapping, but let's not go into that rabbit hole yet.
The conclusion to all this is that augmented reality is a growing segment Working in AR, there are certainly opportunities in Cupertino.