Apple today announced that its much-anticipated Vision Pro augmented and virtual reality headset will launch on February 2nd in the United States, with pre-orders beginning on January 19th. The Vision Pro marks Apple’s first major new product category since the Apple Watch in 2015 and represents the company’s long-rumored entry into the mixed reality market.
Vision Pro to Launch February 2nd for $3499
The Vision Pro will be available starting February 2nd at a price of $3499, positioning it as a high-end device meant to compete with offerings from Meta and others. Customers will be able to pre-order the Vision Pro beginning January 19th.
Included in the box along with the Vision Pro headset will be a charging cord, a cleaning cloth, and an alternate headstrap which allows the headset to be worn more like a baseball cap. The standard headstrap design includes a rigid rear skull cap with an adjustable top strap.
Cutting-Edge Displays and Cameras Provide Immersive Experience
The Vision Pro aims to provide a best-in-class mixed reality experience through the use of innovative display and sensor technology. Each lens in the headset contains a micro-OLED 4K display, adding up to over 2000 pixels per inch across both eyes. The displays support frame rates up to 120fps for smooth visuals.
Integrated into the Vision Pro are over 14 cameras plus an array of sensors like accelerometers and gyroscopes. This allows for inside-out tracking of the user’s position without the need for external sensors. The cameras and sensors also enable hand-tracking, eye-tracking, and spatial audio.
Powerful New RealityOS Runs Apps and Games
The Vision Pro will showcase Apple’s new RealityOS software platform. RealityOS powers the core headset functionality while also providing APIs for developers to build immersive apps and games.
Several studios are already working on titles for the Vision Pro, including iterations of popular mobile games like What the Golf? and Fruit Ninja that take full advantage of mixed reality. Disney is planning to bring a suite of their characters to the device as well. In addition to games, Apple highlighted productivity apps in areas like design, communication, health and fitness, and content creation.
The RealityOS interface features windows and menus that can be placed around the user’s environment. Apple has developed a specialized keyboard for text input viewable inside the headset. A newly designed App Store will provide access to RealityOS apps and games.
Advanced Safety Features for Comfortable Long-Term Wear
In designing the Vision Pro, Apple emphasized comfort for extended wear. The distribution of weight, adjustable straps, and contour of the visor all aim to avoid pressure points during use.
Integrated eye-tracking allows the device to detect when the user’s eyes are not properly aligned with the displays. This can notify the user to adjust the headset position if needed. The Vision Pro will also monitor usage time and provide alerts when it may be healthy to take a break.
Addressing hygiene, the headset and its removable facial interface can be cleaned with common disinfecting wipes. The Vision Pro is rated IPX2 for water resistance against splashing and sweat.
Partnerships With Third Parties Boost Launch Offerings
To bolster the capabilities of the Vision Pro at launch, Apple has secured partnerships with leading companies in several industries.
Luxottica, the eyewear conglomerate behind brands like Ray-Ban and Oakley, has co-designed prescription lens inserts for the Vision Pro in conjunction with Zeiss. This will allow users with vision needs to experience the headset without compromising visual accuracy or field of view.
For enterprise customers, Apple is working with Accenture to develop custom apps and solutions taking advantage of the Vision Pro’s capabilities in areas like design, training, and collaboration.
Vision Pro Lays Groundwork for Apple’s Next Big Platform
While the Vision Pro itself represents a milestone product for Apple, it is also the first step in the company’s grander ambition to establish augmented and virtual reality as a major new computing platform.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has spoken extensively about his belief that mixed reality will one day be as ubiquitous as the iPhone. “It works like your mind does,” Cook said of the technology underlying the Vision Pro. “It takes the real world and enhances it.”
With the Vision Pro now poised to ship next month, the focus will turn to adoption rates among consumers and developers. Its pricing puts it hundreds below Meta’s high-end Quest Pro headset. If Apple can drive usage of the Vision Pro and RealityOS, it has the ecosystem in place to support mixed reality over the coming years with more advanced hardware, software updates, and connectivity with other Apple devices.
What Comes After the Vision Pro?
As anticipation builds for the launch of the Vision Pro, rumors are already swirling around Apple’s roadmap for future mixed reality products.
|Vision Pro 2
|Higher resolution displays, smaller/lighter design, possible cellular connectivity
|Lower cost mixed reality viewer, less powerful than Vision Pro
|Successor to Vision Pro, major hardware and software enhancements
Apple is also said to be working on a dedicated augmented reality headset with transparent displays that could arrive later this decade, along with lightweight smartglasses for consumers down the line.
But in the near term, all eyes are on the Vision Pro to see whether Apple’s initial foray into this space will live up to expectations and push mixed reality into the mainstream. The February 2nd launch will be the first step in realizing the company’s vision for spatial computing.
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