Apple has officially stepped into the world of augmented reality (AR) with the announcement of its highly-anticipated headset, the Apple Vision Pro. Hailed as a transformative product by Apple CEO Tim Cook, this innovative device is designed to “seamlessly” integrate the digital and real worlds, offering users an unprecedented AR and virtual reality (VR) experience.
The Apple Vision Pro, reminiscent of ski goggles in appearance, is not just another device to look at – it’s a device to look through. This approach marks a significant shift in how users interact with technology, providing a much more immersive experience. The device includes a separate battery pack and can be controlled using the eyes, hands, and voice. With a starting price of $3,499, the headset is slated for an early release next year, initially in the U.S. market, with other countries to follow later in the year.
One of the standout features of the Vision Pro is its versatility. Positioned primarily as an AR device, it also possesses full VR capabilities, allowing users to switch between AR and VR modes using a dial. This dual functionality opens up a world of possibilities, from gaming and entertainment to professional applications in industries like healthcare, engineering, and education.
Beyond its AR and VR capabilities, the Vision Pro is a powerhouse of innovation. The device operates on visionOS, an operating system where rows of app icons can be navigated simply by looking at them. This controller-free device also supports voice commands and Apple promises that “hundreds of thousands of familiar iPhone and iPad apps” will be compatible with this interface. The headset also supports Bluetooth accessories, including the Magic Keyboard and Magic Trackpad, and can even connect to a Mac for usage within the headset. Notably, the headset includes downward-facing cameras to capture hand movements, even if they’re resting low on the body, further enhancing its user-friendly design and functionality.
June 16, 2023 Update: The refresh rate for the Apple Vision Pro display/screen will be 90Hz. When viewing 24FPS content though, it can spike to max 96Hz.
As we anticipate the launch of the Apple Vision Pro, it’s clear that Apple is venturing boldly into the future of augmented and virtual reality. Stay tuned for further updates on this groundbreaking device and the exciting new opportunities it promises to bring.