Apple's microLED display expansion may include an augmented reality wearable

It's apparently not just the Apple Watch getting in on the next-gen screens
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After reports indicated last week that Apple is exploring its own microLED display technology, whispers now suggest that the screens could also show up on an augmented reality wearable.

Bloomberg's initial report suggested that the Apple Watch would be the first to take advantage of the new technology. That's now been backed up by Digitimes, which also speculates that an AR wearable is in line to receive a microLED display.

Read this: Augmented reality explained

Furthering the initial claims, Digitimes says that high-end models of the smartwatch and a headset will feature the screens, measuring roughly 1.4- and 0.8-inches, respectively. If true, the displays are likely in the early stages of development at Apple's own 'secret' microLED facility in California.

The report also notes that the Cupertino giant is partnering with the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) to bring the next-gen displays to the mass market, with the frames allegedly set to be ready for an Apple Watch by the end of 2018 - something Bloomberg, in its earlier report, suggested for 2020.

In case you're not sure, let's recap a couple of the benefits of microLED technology over OLED. Firstly, these displays require about half the power, so they're much more energy efficient, while also being brighter and offering higher contrast ratios. Perhaps most importantly to Apple, they're thinner, as well, which means they naturally enable thinner devices.

Get the detail: All the latest on Apple's AR plans

As for the reports, well, despite there likely being some truth to the details surrounding Apple's plans for the technology, we'd suggest that mass market devices harbouring the technology still sit some way off, especially if they're being pushed into an AR wearable. Once Apple does make the leap, though, expect it to deliver microLED displays across its crop of devices.

Apple's microLED display expansion may include an augmented reality wearable

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Conor Allison


Conor moved to Wareable Media Group in 2017, initially covering all the latest developments in smartwatches, fitness trackers, and VR. He made a name for himself writing about trying out translation earbuds on a first date and cycling with a wearable airbag, as well as covering the industry’s latest releases.

Following a stint as Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint, Conor returned to Wareable Media Group in 2022 as Editor-at-Large. Conor has become a wearables expert, and helps people get more from their wearable tech, via Wareable's considerable how-to-based guides. 

He has also contributed to British GQ, Wired, Metro, The Independent, and The Mirror. 

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