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Piper Jaffray: Apple's virtual reality product should boost iPhone sales

VR and AR could be more than just a nice product for the masses: instead, the iPhone should benefit from such a move, too
Apple's Software
March 23, 2016

Piper Jaffray has published a new note concerning the prospect of a virtual reality product coming from Apple, a recent report explains. In it, the investment firm argues that such a product, which leverages virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR), should boost sales of the iPhone.

Look out Oculus

Look out Oculus

Look out Oculus

The news comes in an article from AppleInsider, and there, the publication explains that analyst Gene Munster believes a Cupertino-developed VR technology could launch “within the next two years.” This device would link to a headset and by powered by an associated iPhone handset, suggesting that Apple could expand its “Made for iPhone” program in order to add virtual reality headsets and products.

As such, third-party companies might be able to offer their own headsets to work with iOS and Apple's iPhone. And as AppleInsider rightly adds, the move should bolster iPhone sales:

Still, like the Apple Watch, VR is likely to be viewed by Apple as a companion to the iPhone, and something to complement it and potentially drive more sales, rather than a standalone product — at least at first, Munster said.

- AppleInsider

Though such a move might ultimately see Apple pursue a technology that replaces the iPhone, Munster added that Cupertino isn't concerned with avoiding new markets out of a fear of cannibalizing sales of current products: “Apple has historically cannibalized products including the iPod via the iPhone, Macs for a short time with iPads and perhaps again with the iPad Pro, and iPads with the iPhone 6/6s+. While Apple has yet to launch a product that cannibalizes the iPhone franchise, we believe that the company realizes that the smartphone as we know it won't last forever.”

The distant future for Apple, then, might indeed lie in VR/AR, rather than conventional screen-based computing. For Munster, this, along with a so-called “Apple Car,” is what fans of the Cupertino-based company have to look forward to. As always, we'll keep you posted with further information as we receive it.