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HomeTechUh-oh, Apple Vision Pro: A Samsung and Google XR headset is coming...

Uh-oh, Apple Vision Pro: A Samsung and Google XR headset is coming ‘later this year’

Samsung and Google are working on an XR (extended reality) headset, threatening the Apple Vision Pro. How do we know? Well, Google SVP of Platforms and Services Rick Osterloh made an appearance at Samsung’s Unpacked event, which showcased new products like the Samsung Galaxy Ring, the Galaxy Watch Ultra, and the Galaxy Z Fold 6.

Osterloh appeared on stage to reaffirm Google’s commitment to bringing AI-powered capabilities, particularly in the form of Google Gemini, to Samsung phones and other Android devices. After all, on both the Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Galaxy Z Flip 6, you’ll find Gemini built into the OS. But that’s not the only way Google plans to collaborate with Samsung.

Samsung and Google to tackle ‘XR’ later this year

Osterloh announced that Google and Samsung are “working closely to develop” a new XR platform. Qualcomm, by the way, is part of the collaboration. The chipset maker already works with Samsung to pack its Galaxy devices with chipsets, but Qualcomm is no stranger to XR devices either. (The Meta Quest 3, for example, runs on a Qualcomm processor called the Snapdragon XR2.)

Samsung President TM Roh emphasized Osterloh’s statement, telling the audience that this mixed-reality device will roll out “later this year.” That’s a lot sooner than we thought.

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This isn’t the first time we’ve heard about this XR collaboration. At last year’s Samsung Unpacked in February 2023, Google and Qualcomm executives stopped by to reveal their XR plans. “We’re working to create a new era of highly immersive digital experiences that blur the lines between our physical and digital worlds,” Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon said.

For the uninitiated, XR refers to any technology — like augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) — that modifies reality by integrating digital elements into the physical world in some way. For example, the Apple Vision Pro and Meta Quest 3 would fall into the XR category. Both have augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) capabilities. AR lets you interact with virtual elements while still seeing your real-life surroundings. VR, on the other hand, brings you total immersion, as if you’ve been transported into a new simulated plane.

Samsung and Google have been hush-hush about their XR project, but the streets are talkin’. Rumor has it that both are working on an Apple Vision Pro-like headset called Samsung Flex Magic, according to a leaker called @TheGalox_alt on X.

Other than that, there isn’t much scuttlebutt about the upcoming XR product. We’ll just have to wait to see whether Samsung and Google can produce a worthy Apple Vision Pro opponent.

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