Unicorn AR Startup Magic Leap is Killing Its First Headset Next Year – Road to VR
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Magic Leap 1, the AR headset that helped the Plantation, Florida-based startup attract over three billion dollars in funding, will be completely defunct by late next year.
The company announced this week that Magic Leap 1’s cloud services are due to be shut off on December 31st, 2024. After that date, the headset will receive no further support.
The loss of cloud services indeed means the headset will essentially be ‘bricked’ on that date, as “core functionality will reach end-of-life and the Magic Leap 1 device and apps will cease to function,” the company says in a recent FAQ.
On September 29th, 2023, a number of developer resources are being pulled too, including the forum dedicated to Magic Leap 1 as well as the headset’s dedicated Discord channel.
Here’s the full statement from Magic Leap, courtesy a comment made by Reddit user ‘The Golden Leaper’.
Today we are announcing that Magic Leap 1 end of life date will be December 31, 2024. Magic Leap 1 is no longer available for purchase, but will continue to be supported through December 31, 2024 as follows:
Magic Leap 1 Developer Forum: On September 29th, 2023, Magic Leap 1 Developer Forum (https://ml1-developer.magicleap.com/) will no longer be available. Please refer to the Magic Leap 2 Developer Forum for current information and updates on the Magic Leap platform.
Magic Leap Discord channel: On September 29th, 2023, Magic Leap Discord channel will no longer be available. Please refer to the Magic Leap 2 Developer Forum for current information and updates on the Magic Leap platform.
OS Updates: Magic Leap will only address outages that impact core functionality (as determined by Magic Leap) until December 31, 2024.
Customer Care (http://magicleap.com/contactus) will continue to offer Magic Leap 1 product troubleshooting assistance through December 31, 2024.
Warranties: Magic Leap will continue to honor valid warranty claims under the Magic Leap 1 Warranty Policy available here (https://www.magicleap.com/ml1/warranty-policies).
While no longer sold by Magic Leap, the company was selling ML 1 up until mid-2022. Brand new units, including the headset’s hip-worn compute unit and single controller, were being liquidated for the barn burner deal of $550 via Amazon subsidiary Woot. It’s uncertain how many developers and enterprise users will be affected by the shutdown, however they do have a little over a year to figure out a replacement strategy.
Launched in 2018, Magic Leap straddled an uneasy rift between enterprise and prosumers with ML 1 (known then as ‘ML One’), which gained it a lukewarm reception mostly thanks to its $2,300 price tag and relatively narrow differentiation from Microsoft HoloLens. Despite Magic Leap’s best efforts, it simply wasn’t the consumer device the company wanted to make from the onset.
A leadership shuffle in mid-2020 saw co-founder and CEO Rony Abovitz step down, tapping former Microsoft exec Peggy Johnson to take the reins and immediately pivot to target enterprise with its most recent AR headset, Magic Leap 2.
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