In the recent years it has been rumored that Apple’s next big product could come in the form of augmented reality (AR) smart glasses. Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has long extolled the virtues of AR, so the idea that Apple could be interested in further exploring the technology doesn’t really come as a surprise.

Now it seems that the rumors of Apple-made AR glasses are being fueled in a recent report from the Nikkei Asian Review. The report sees the publication interview the Chairman of Catcher Technology, Allen Horng, who revealed that the company is going to start making metal components for AR devices.

For those unfamiliar, Catcher is one of Apple’s suppliers and has been responsible for creating the metal casings used in a variety of Apple products, which includes the iPhone, iPad, and MacBook laptops. While we’re sure that Catcher has other customers besides Apple, the timing does seem to be rather coincidental, what with Apple launching ARKit and the iPhone X sporting a TrueDepth camera system that leverages AR for certain features like Animoji.

According to Horng, “Based on what we have learned, [new AR products] need to look good and be light enough to wear … that makes the casings for such device very complicated to manufacture and there are still a lot of challenges to overcome currently.” Naturally Horng did not mention the product that Catcher is working on, but like we said, Catcher’s close ties with Apple has fueled speculation that it could be Apple-related.

That being said, Apple’s CEO recently hinted that if and when such a product from Apple were to launch, it would probably be in the distant future as he believes that at the moment, the technology doesn’t exist to do it in a “quality way”.

Filed in Apple >Gadgets >Rumors. Read more about Augmented Reality (AR) and Wearable Tech.

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