Apple’s plans for an AR/VR headset are likely to come through this year. After a round of rumours and leaks, Apple has now dropped a big hint that its AR/VR headset is indeed happening in the near future, if not sometime soon. The latest beta version of the iPhone software includes some internal features, which will support augmented and virtual realities. It also confirms that Apple is finally working to bring push notifications for web apps on iOS
Developer Maximiliano Firtman has spotted two big changes in the iOS 15.4 beta software. One is that Apple has included the WebXR API in the software and the other one is a combination of “Built-in Web Notifications” and “Push API” toggles.
The first one will be used for augmented and virtual realities on websites, but since Apple’s iOS does not support AR/VR headsets yet, this feature is disabled. However, it certainly provides solid proof that Apple is working on the headset and that it may arrive in the near future. And since Apple has decided to keep this feature disabled in the upcoming iOS update, there is no chance any third-party headset will use it to configure the technology on the iPhone. But, anyway, the feature does confirm that Apple is planning to finally introduce AR/VR technology
The second feature is something that should have been introduced by Apple long ago. Push notifications for web apps that are available as a feature for Android PWA (progressive web apps) have finally made their way onto the iPhone. While Safari on macOS has supported alerts from websites when they are in the background, iOS never had a feature like this. But iOS 15.4 has hinted Apple is working towards that. The beta software has the two toggles: “Built-in Web Notifications” and “Push API” inside the WebKit Experimental features inside Safari. But these options are not working right now, according to 9to5Mac. Anyway, there is a strong indication that web apps are in for an overhaul soon.
The beta software also revealed that developers will no longer need to do extra work for assigning web app icons on iOS devices. For four years, developers have had to add specific codes to give their web app an app icon because the Web App Manifest on iOS did not support declaration of icons. But Apple is adding support for universal custom icons with the next update for the iPhone.