Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook backs AR tech over the metaverse

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Tim Cook, the chief executive of Apple Inc., said in a recent interview that augmented reality (AR) will become the biggest technology of the future, while he devalued metaverse and virtual reality (VR) technology.

See related article: The metaverse is already here. What’s holding back the party?

Fast facts

  • “I think AR is a profound technology that will affect everything … We are really going to look back and think about how we once lived without AR,” Cook told Dutch media Bright.
  • Augmented reality technology integrates computer-generated content into a real-world environment, while virtual reality, like the name, is completely virtual. 
  • Some popular examples of AR technology include the mobile game Pokemon Go, which has 3D cartoon characters appear in the real world through a mobile app, or the IKEA app, which allows users to virtually place furniture in their own private home using a mobile phone camera.
  • Cook explained the reason behind Apple not using the term “metaverse” is that people do not have a full understanding of what it is. The term is generally used to describe platforms that make use of VR technology where people can work, play and interact with others.
  • Virtual reality is “something you can really immerse yourself in,” according to Cook. But he added that the technology is useful for certain aspects in life but not as an effective tool for communication.
  • Apple is developing several new products based on AR technology, including a VR/AR headset and AR glasses.
  • Many of Apple’s competitors such as Meta have utilized the term “metaverse” to launch communicative and interactive platforms for users. 

See related article: Shanghai sees its metaverse industry growing to US$52 billion in four years

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