Apple’s former hardware leader reportedly now overseeing AR and VR devices

Apple’s former hardware leader, Dan Riccio, is now overseeing the company’s still-secretive work on augmented and virtual reality products, according to Bloomberg. Riccio stepped back from Apple last month, after serving as senior vice president of hardware engineering since 2012. At the time, Riccio said he would remain at the company with a focus on “creating something new,” but he didn’t say what that would be.

Mike Rockwell, who runs Apple’s AR / VR group, is still responsible for day-to-day development of these upcoming products, according to Bloomberg. But Riccio reportedly has “ultimate oversight” of Apple’s first hardware to enter the space.

There have been reports for years indicating that Apple is working on AR and VR hardware. That’s been buoyed by Apple’s continued investments in AR on its iPhones and iPads, plus some coy remarks from CEO Tim Cook.

The latest reports suggest that Apple plans to first debut an expensive virtual reality headset as a stepping stone on the path toward a more impressive augmented reality device. The Information reported last week that the VR device could sell for $3,000 and launch in 2022.