Apple is supposedly working furiously on product ideas to enter the Virtual Reality market. There have even been reports of several prototypes of VR headsets created by a secret research team said to be comprised of hundreds of engineers.
If Apple has been mind-bogglingly quiet about VR, it did offer a sign of interest recently when the View-Master VR headset appeared for sale on Apple’s website.
View-Master – yes, that View-Master – debuted a VR headset for $29.95 last year that turns a smartphone into a window for augmented and virtual reality content. It is unclear when Apple first listed the View-Master for sale. A Reddit reader, dbx001, first noticed on Apple’s website Monday. The page shows the headset has not yet been reviewed nor has anyone posted questions.
Last week, Cult of Mac’s Buster Hein reported on Apple’s efforts to enter the VR market. Some members of Apple’s VR team, include hires from Lytro, Microsoft’s Hololens team and a top VR professor from Virginia Tech. Apple has also purchased a number of companies that specialize in VR.
During Apple’s recent earnings call, CEO Tim Cook was enthusiastic about the future of Virtual Reality, saying that he thinks it’s “cool” and has some “interesting applications.”
For now, Mattel’s View-Master VR headset can give iPhone users there first little taste of VR, without having to splurge for a new Occulus system or something else from Sony and HTC.
If the headset is more for kids, the design is still mature enough for adults to enjoy their VR content without feeling like they swiped a child’s toy. It is red, white and black and can hold iPhone models from 5 to the 6s Plus. The headset is pictured on the Apple site with an iPhone inside.
It is the only headset Apple lists for sale (in can be ordered for pickup at an Apple Store near you). There are also three experience packs for the View-Master VR headset available for purchase.