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Apple’s VR headset may have leaked — but there’s a catch

The first images of components for Apple’s mixed-reality headset have supposedly just leaked online, possibly providing a tantalizing glimpse of what is to come. But there are questions surrounding the images, and they might not be what they claim to be.

The images were posted by MrWhite128 on Twitter, a protected account known for having provided accurate Apple leaks and information in the past. The four pictures seem to show various cable arrangements, including a handful apparently shaped to fit around a user’s eyes.

While the post did not directly claim the cables were from Apple’s headset, the @MrWhite128 account almost exclusively posts Apple content, so the implication is that these cables are related to an Apple project of some kind.

That, combined with the cable set that seems suspiciously shaped to contour around a user’s eyes, means the Reality Pro device immediately springs to mind. That product is set to launch at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June, so it is perhaps unsurprising that images are leaking out as we approach the release date.

Can you trust the images?

A rendering of an Apple mixed-reality headset (Reality Pro) in a gold color seen from the front.
Apple headset render. Ahmed Chenni,

Concerns have been raised with one of the images, however. That’s because one picture shows a straight cable punctuated with what appear to be three sensors — one at each end and a third in the center (it’s the final image in the gallery above). However, this cable looks almost identical to the microphone array inside the original HomePod. That could be a red flag.

The similarity could suggest one of two things: either Apple is reusing components inside the Reality Pro, or the image does not actually depict a cable from the headset. If the latter assumption is correct, it could bring into question the rest of the images included in the Twitter post.

Previous leaks have claimed that the design of the Reality Pro will be reminiscent of other Apple devices, including an Apple Watch-like Digital Crown for switching between virtual reality and augmented reality. That suggests Apple might not be averse to reusing ideas from its other products, which could explain the apparently recycled cable.

On the other hand, the leak might simply be incorrect. As it’s pre-release information and there’s no way of independently confirming it, we recommend you treat it with a healthy dose of skepticism. It’s only a few months until Apple is rumored to be launching the Reality Pro anyway, so there shouldn’t be long to wait before we know what it looks like.

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