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Is ‘realityOS’ going to power Apple’s upcoming headset?

Apple’s next operating system name has been discovered in a code repository.

Apple headset render
Image: 9to5Mac

Apple’s push into augmented reality just became more tangible. Developers have found multiple references to “realityOS” in Apple’s codebase, most recently in an Apple-owned GitHub repository. That could mean we’re one step closer to the release of Apple’s hotly-anticipated Augmented Reality headset.

So, why is that name important? To understand that, you first need to know how Apple names things. For software, it uses the _OS ending for its operating systems. macOS, iPadOS, etc. Seeing realityOS means that Apple has an unreleased operating system out there, for an unreleased device.

The most likely suspect? Apple’s long-awaited VR/AR headset. Which could be announced as early as this year.

The standalone device is reportedly powered by the same chip used in MacBooks – the M1 chip. It might be delayed, however, as Apple and Meta use the same lens supplier for their respective headsets.

READ MORE: Apple’s upcoming mixed reality headset has been delayed…again

Surprisingly, this isn’t the first time that “realityOS” has shown up in Apple code. References to “rOS” appeared in early iOS 13 builds, way back in 2017.

Additionally, that report mentioned that the operating system was based on iOS. If it was back then, realityOS seems to have “its own OS & binaries… and a realityOS simulator.”

Apple tried to scrub the code containing realityOS mentions but the internet never forgets. The only question we have now is did Apple intentionally leak the name, in order to build media and developer hype in advance of WWDC 22? It looks like it worked.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere. His hobbies include photography, animation, and hoarding Reddit gold.

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