Here’s how iOS 14 could be paving the way for ‘glassOS’


glassOS concept 3
This is how notifications and widgets could look on glassOS.
Photo: Jordan Singer

It’s still not clear exactly when Apple’s AR glasses are going to be available, but 25-year-old product designer Jordan Singer says that Apple has left enough breadcrumbs in its code to offer a compelling glimpse of what a possible glassOS might look like.

“I don’t usually like to speculate on what Apple is going to do next, but this time I found too many coincidental examples of new UI in iOS 14 that seems to be able to translate nicely to a pair of glasses,” Singer told Cult of Mac. “I’d like for this concept to give insight into how Apple is foreshadowing the future.”

Singer explained that his concept takes “bits and pieces” of iOS 14 UI and overlays it over real world images in context. “I think the widgets are most fascinating,” he said. “Another example of Apple experimenting ahead of time with widgets on the home screen in addition to complications on the Watch that translate to UI that will fit nicely on a smaller form factor. My guess? By the time developers have built widgets and complications using SwiftUI for iOS and watchOS, you’ll already be able to run on the glasses out of the box.”

Singer continued that he believes Apple has big plans for augmented reality. “Take a look at all of the ‘experiments’ they’ve been running in real products like with ARKit and LiDAR,” he said. “They’re learning as much as they can before they translate to a new form factor. Apple has been leading up to this moment with the Watch, AirPods, and more. All of that being said, I believe Apple will bring an AR and glasses experience unlike anything we’ve ever seen.”

How glassOS would look with iOS 14 notifications and widgets

You can read more about Singer’s concept here. Below are some of Singer’s mockups. They show how iOS 14 UI elements could appear on the screen of an Apple Glass headset in the future. Such a headset is heavily rumored to be in production at Apple, although reports have disagreed on whether it will be unveiled sometime this year or several years from now.

Would you be interested in a head-up display that flashes up iOS-style notifications in front of your eyes? Do you think Apple would need to develop a deeper, more fundamentally different AR display to make the technology interesting to users? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

glassOS concept 1
Your glasses could reveal when you’re receiving a phone call.
Photo: Jordan Singer
glassOS concept 2
What easier way to find your car after a shopping trip?
Photo: Jordan Singer
glassOS Concept Jordan Singer
Widgets could look great on Apple Glass.