It could be back to the drawing board for Samsung's mixed reality ambitions. A new rumor suggests Samsung is reevaluating the specs for its upcoming Galaxy XR headset following the debut of the long-awaited Apple Vision Pro.
Previously Samsung was thought to be developing a display boasting a pixel density of 2,000 PPI for its mixed reality headset. However, that's apparently no longer the case after Apple showed off its Vision Pro.
Apple’s officially confirmed the headset will pack 23 million pixels across both its twin Micro OLED displays. That would translate to a pixel density of “roughly 3400 PPI," according to a Display Supply Chain Consultants report. In response, Samsung has purportedly decided to upgrade the Galaxy XR display to 3,000 PPI to keep up with the competition, says noted tipster OreXda.
The new and upgraded displays are set to be produced starting this November, OreXda added. Outfitting its headset with a new display would be a massive undertaking, and if that's the case we could be looking at a delayed launch. Another leaker on Twitter, Revegnus, echoed this sentiment, noting that with manufacturing starting so late in the year, there's no way Samsung would be able to release the Galaxy XR before the end of 2023. That could put its launch window closer to that of the Apple Vision Pro, which Apple has said won't be available until 2024.
Samsung XR headset outlook
We first learned that Samsung was teaming up with Google and Qualcomm to develop a new mixed-reality platform during Samsung's February 2023 Unpacked showcase. Details about the project remain scarce, but it's clear that these companies have larger ambitions than VR. At the showcase, they talked about building a platform that can support augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality, meaning VR is just one component of whatever wearable these companies are cooking up.
If Samsung can deliver an affordable headset that's powerful enough to provide solid performance in VR with all the bells of whistles of mixed reality and augmented reality, it could give Apple a run for its money.
With a price tag of $3,499, the Apple Vision Pro is easily the most expensive mainstream headset on the market. The Meta Quest 2 is one of the best VR headsets for the amount of power and portability it packs at an affordable price point. Even with that level of previous success under its belt though, Meta has struggled to sell consumers on its far more expensive Meta Quest Pro, and it's still a third of the price of the Apple Vision Pro.