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Everything You Need to Know About the Apple Vision Pro

Last Updated: January 11, 2024
Apple’s first AR/VR headset won’t come with controllers, but it’s equipped with two 4K mini displays, a 3D interface, spatial audio, and much more.

Apple put all of the rumors to rest when it finally confirmed its long-anticipated virtual reality and augmented reality headset called the Apple Vision Pro.

The tech giant’s stock briefly hit an all-time high earlier Monday ahead of major announcements coming from its annual World Wide Developers Conference, including a sneak peek of the headset. Shares were going for as much as $184.95, surpassing the company’s previous all-time high of $182.94 achieved in January 2022. Apple’s stock has since slipped to roughly $179 per share at the time of this writing, and it might be because the company revealed that its AR/VR headset will cost $3,499 when it hits the market early next year.

The Vision Pro is Apple’s largest product launch since the Apple Watch hit the market, which was nine years ago. Even though consumers don’t seem to like the price tag, let’s dig into what we know about Apple’s newest product.

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The Apple Vision Pro Specs

The Apple Vision Pro headset is iced with laminated glass and fully controlled by users’ eyes, hands, and faces. The 3D interface is equipped with a front-facing display called EyeSight that reveals users’ eyes when someone else is nearby. This setup aligns with the spacial computing system Apple built out for the device that relies on cues from a user’s eyes, hand gestures, and Siri.

Apple immediately set itself apart from its competition since the Vision Pro doesn’t come with any controllers or handheld devices, operating truly as just a headset.

Apple CEO Tim Cook announced at WWDC that the tech giant also built a new operating system called VisionOS specifically for the Vision Pro. The device runs on Apple’s M2 and R1 chips, and the new M2 chip is equipped with both a graphics processing unit and a central processing unit. The headset is equipped with two 4K microdisplays, spatial audio, and optic IDC iris scanning.

The Vision Pro allows users to immerse themselves in virtual reality or tap into real-world environments to dip into augmented reality. As part of the enrollment process, users can create a 3D digital twin of themselves.

Interestingly enough, Apple’s presentation of Vision Pro focused heavily on typical work, showing us how emails, presentations, video calls, news, and the web operate. Users can even create a Vision Pro-friendly version of their Mac desktops in the headset, and there is a virtual keyboard available. Vision Pro will have Bluetooth capabilities to connect Magic Trackpad and Magic Keyboard devices.

Gaming was virtually not mentioned, though we can expect it will be a part of the Vision Pro vision eventually since the device can connect to game controllers and access Apple Arcade titles. Apple announced a partnership with 3D content developer Unity to develop exclusive apps and games for the Vision Pro.

As for entertainment, users can control the size of their viewing screens in Spatial Cinema mode, and the device supports 3D movies. Disney CEO Bob Iger joined the presentation to confirm that there will be a Disney+ app for Vision Pro. He also teased a new What If experience that might let users turn themselves into superheroes.

Like all of Apple’s other devices, the Vision Pro can sync with iCloud, iPhones, Macs, and iPads.

Here is a closer peek at what the headset will look like.

At first glance, it looks like the Vision Pro’s rear band is wrapped in a ribbed cloth material for more comfort. The device’s face pad is flexible to conform to faces of all shapes and sizes, and the size straps can stretch a bit.

The biggest shock about Vision Pro is that it can only run for two hours with an external battery pack or all day while plugged into a charger. Regardless, the Vision Pro has to be plugged into some power source to work; that’ll be hard to get around if Apple plans to develop apps and offerings that require movement with the headset on.

And yes, there is an eery resemblance between Vision Pro and the Ready Player One device. I am sensing a spike in streaming for that movie coming soon.

More Announcements from WWDC

As usual, Apple laid out dozens of updates and technological advances, including the usual announcements of a new operating system, fresh Mac and MacBook models, and new Apple Watches. Here are a few more intriguing tech updates Apple users can tap into soon:

  • Namedrop: This new Airdrop feature lets iPhone and Apple Watch users share their contact information with each other by simply bringing their devices close together.
  • Autocorrect: Apple upgraded its autocorrect feature with AI to better predict what users will say next.
  • Standby: iPhones can now transform into full-screen nightstand displays when charging on a special station in landscape mode.
  • Videomail: Like voicemail, but instead, short videos you can send to someone when they miss your FaceTime call.
  • Siri: You can finally drop the “hey” before speaking to Siri now.
  • Airpods: New AirPod models will include an adaptive audio feature that quiets active noise around a user.
  • Apple TV: FaceTime is officially coming to the big screen and will be available on Apple TV for iPhone and iPad users.

If you missed the two-hour event, here’s the full video for a breakdown of what Apple has in store.

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Michelai Graham

Michelai Graham is Boardroom's resident tech and crypto reporter. Before joining 35V, she was a freelance reporter with bylines in AfroTech, HubSpot, The Plug, and Lifewire, to name a few. At Boardroom, Michelai covers Web3, NFTs, crypto, tech, and gaming. Off the clock, you can find her producing her crime podcast, The Point of No Return.