Apple has reiterated one key fact about the Vision Pro — it will launch “early” in 2024. With no date set in stone, that has been up to the relentless rumor mill to fill in the blanks, and everyone has pointed towards a March release.
But as inevitable as day turns into night (mostly night here in dear old Blighty), Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman is here to contradict his own previous leaks. According to internal sources, Apple Vision Pro could be “out the door” by January.
New year, new VR
Provided you didn’t go all gung-ho on your Christmas spending (my nephew is probably able to recreate a life-size version of Adventure Bay with all the Paw Patrol toys he’s getting), you should be able to drop $3,500 and secure yourself an Apple Vision Pro.
What makes Gurman so confident? Well, it comes down to the specialized retail experience Apple is planning to offer to customers — including a “carefully orchestrated” walkthrough of the setup process, customizing the headset for every customer and boxing it on-site.
This will take staff training, and Gurman revealed a two-day initiative, where select store employees will get the training around this experience. These are expected to start in the middle of January, which coincides with the possibility of Apple Stores getting Vision Pro inventory rather soon.
The ultimate question now is what the appetite will be like for a super expensive, super high-end VR headset. Regardless of the premium construction and technology powering the Vision Pro (which we called a mixed reality breakthrough in our hands-on), that $3,499 price tag is going to be hard to swallow.
Apple has big ambitions for the headset, with expectations of it being on 10 million faces within three years, even though the Cupertino crew may have canned a lower cost version for a future release.
With the likes of the $499 Meta Quest 3 giving us a decent mixed reality suite, and Xreal Air 2 AR glasses being given some sweet software support to give you Spatial Computing on the cheap, this is becoming an increasingly competitive field that Apple is wading into with something that not many people are going to be able to afford. Time will tell whether this is the right strategy.
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Jason brings a decade of tech and gaming journalism experience to his role as a Managing Editor of Computing at Tom's Guide. He has previously written for Laptop Mag, Tom's Hardware, Kotaku, Stuff and BBC Science Focus. In his spare time, you'll find Jason looking for good dogs to pet or thinking about eating pizza if he isn't already.