By: Nick Gambino
Right when the chaos that is CES 2024 was starting to ramp up, Apple decided to steal some of the electronics show’s thunder by setting a release date for the much-anticipated Vision Pro. The mixed-reality headset is due to hit shelves on February 2nd with pre-orders opening up on January 19th.
While there are a lot of VR and mixed-reality headsets out there, Meta Quest being arguably the most popular, they all seem to offer the same look and feel. Apple’s plan is to disrupt the field by doing what they do best – creating something wholly original.
The Vision Pro addresses one of the main issues many have with these reality headsets which is that they create a sort of insulated experience that isolates you from the outside world. Kind of like a mental and sensory solitary confinement. The new Apple headset has an exterior display that allows people around you to see your eyes and allows you to see the exterior world without the need to remove it.
Apple knows what they’re doing, even going as far as coining a new term “spatial reality” instead of calling it “mixed reality.” They want you to use the Vision Pro as you would any other major Apple product like your iPhone or Apple Watch. It’s not just about gaming or watching movies. If they play it right, you’ll use it to FaceTime, edit videos, write documents and pretty much anything you’d do with a computer.
This has the potential to revolutionize the computing space, ushering in a new type of ubiquitous device. The only thing that may keep it from achieving total lift-off is that it’s not very portable. That said, I can see the Vision Pro being a jump-off point for a future mobile mixed-reality headset or pair of glasses.
One other thing that may work against it is the price tag. When it goes on sale in February, the Vision Pro will set you back a cool $3,500. That’s not nothing and will make it less accessible to those living with a tight budget.
I’m excited to see if 2024 is finally the year of mixed reality. If anyone is capable of making that happen, it’s Apple.