Mira Unveils Prism, a Surprisingly Affordable Augmented Reality Headset for iPhone

A Los Angeles startup has unveiled a device akin to the Google Daydream, but with two distinctions: first, it’s for augmented, not virtual, reality; and second, it’s for iPhone, not Android.

Mira’s headset, called Prism, matches Daydream in one important way though: it’s cheap. At $99, the Prism is an accessible novelty for iOS users who feel left out in the cold waiting for Apple to launch proprietary hardware for its recently announced ARKit while Android users prance about with shells of plastic strapped to their foreheads.

The fact that the headset does not actually contain its own electronics—the device relies entirely on iPhone apps to generate AR experiences—was probably done as a cost-cutting measure, but also acts as a form of future-proofing: as developers flock to build software for iOS through the ARKit, owners of the Prism will enjoy a continually improving product.

Mira admits that it has not fully explored the possibilities of ARKit, but nonetheless, Prism is now available for preorder. Until Apple decides to launch its own headset, this startup’s product is probably an iOS user’s smartest choice to test the waters of mixed reality.