Apple Vision Pro password reset process sounds like a nightmare — here’s why

Apple Vision Pro
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Apple is no doubt pleased about reports its Apple Vision Pro headset apparently sold out over its pre-order weekend despite costing roughly $3,500, but owners of the pricey new headset may be less happy to discover they have to send it back to Apple if they forget their password.

That's according to a recent report from Bloomberg Apple expert Mark Gurman that the Apple Vision Pro requires owners to either mail it back to Apple or physically return the headset to an Apple store to reset the password on the device. According to instructions reportedly given to Apple staff, the Vision Pro requires an Apple employee to reset it, and the reset process erases all data on the device. 

It sounds ridiculous enough that by the time you read this Apple may well have released a software update that addresses the obvious issue with this process, which is that having to physically return the headset and forfeit all data on the device because you forgot your password is an unreasonable hassle—especially for a headset that costs nearly $4k

The Apple Vision Pro can wirelessly connect to your MacBook Pro while you're wearing the headset, but there's no way to connect it to your Mac for a factory reset—for that you need to take it to Apple. (Image credit: Tom's Guide)

As Bloomberg points out, there are already numerous reports cropping up on the Apple Vision Pro section of Apple's official forums of users getting locked out of their headsets after mistyping passwords one too many times. One user reports that after calling Apple's official support number they had to wait an estimated 90 minutes to talk to a "senior level" support staffer, who then said that Apple Vision Pro owners would have to physically return units for password resets unless and until Apple is able to issue a fix via software update.

"I was told by the support member that internally they expressed significant concern regarding this return-to-store 'support' procedure and were told there was nothing else they could do until a software update was released," reads an excerpt of the user's report. "Luckily, I live close to an Apple Store, many others are not so fortunate."

Elsewhere in the same thread you can read Apple Vision Pro owners' dismay at discovering that Apple employees are resetting Vision Pro units via the Developer Strap, a $300 accessory only sold to official Apple developers that allows you to connect the headset to a Mac or iPad and transmit data back and forth.

Outlook

As silly as this sounds, the quote above gets to the heart of why this seemingly minor flub on Apple's part is a potentially huge accessibility roadblock that needs to be removed ASAP: Physically returning a device to an Apple store is a hassle for any owner, especially so for folks who have difficulty getting around. 

Even just packing up and mailing a headset back to Apple can be challenging for people who live in remote areas or have mobility issues, which is part of the reason we've come to expect devices we own have simple, easy-to-use reset systems in place: So we can fix them if something goes wrong, without having to rely on the manufacturer. We've also come to expect our devices offer password reset systems that don't completely erase all our data in the process.

Given how negative a lot of the comments online are from disappointed owners of Apple's most expensive gadget yet, it's likely you can expect the company to address this issue and other Apple Vision complaints in the near future. We've reached out to Apple directly to find out more, and will update this story accordingly as we hear back!

More from Tom's Guide

Alex Wawro

Alex Wawro is a lifelong tech and games enthusiast with more than a decade of experience covering both for outlets like Game Developer, Black Hat, and PC World magazine. A lifelong PC builder, he currently serves as a senior editor at Tom's Guide covering all things computing, from laptops and desktops to keyboards and mice.