Google is now working on an augmented reality headset codenamed Project Iris, which the company hopes to release in 2024. This is reported by The Verge, citing two sources familiar with the project. It is noted that this is a secret project, which is supposed to be an answer to similar AR devices that Apple and Meta are also working on.
The core team involved in the development of the headset consists of about 300 people, but the tech giant plans to hire about 100 more people.
Like upcoming headsets from Meta and Apple, Google's headset uses outward-facing cameras to bring computer graphics into the real world, creating a more immersive mixed reality experience. An early prototype of Google's headset resembles ski goggles and does not require an external power source to work.
Google's headset is still in its early stages of development with no well-defined go-to-market strategy, indicating that the 2024 release may be just a desirable but not entirely realistic plan.
The device is based on a processor created by Google and runs on Android. However, The Verge notes that recently published job listings indicate that the company plans to develop a special OS for the headset.
Google has not yet decided on the name of the headset. The Google Glass option will probably not be considered, as the original 2013 device still exists.
In 2020, Google acquired North, a Canadian company that used to make smart glasses called Focals, which could be synced with Alexa, Spotify, Slack, and more.
In December 2021, Google introduced Project Starline, an advanced video communication technology that allows people to communicate as if they were close to each other. According to sources, the company expects to launch Starline along with an AR headset in 2024.