Apple’s $3500 mixed reality headset hits stores February 2

Vision Pro will introduce a new era in computing, Apple says.
Sign up for the Freethink Weekly newsletter!
A collection of our favorite stories straight to your inbox

Apple has announced a release date for Vision Pro, the highly anticipated mixed reality headset that CEO Tim Cook promises will “redefine how we connect, create, and explore.”

The background: The unveiling of Vision Pro was arguably the biggest news to come out of Apple’s WorldWide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2023.

According to Apple, the mixed reality headset gives you the option of immersing yourself in fully virtual worlds or merging digital content with your real environment. Instead of issuing commands through a keyboard or touchscreen, you intuitively interact with this system using your eyes, gestures, and voice.

“Just as the Mac introduced us to personal computing, and iPhone introduced us to mobile computing, Apple Vision Pro introduces us to spatial computing,” said Cook at the time.

A woman wearing Apple's mixed reality headset.
Apple

What’s new? Apple noted during WWDC 2023 that Vision Pro would arrive in 2024, but it has now set February 2 as the exact date when the mixed reality headset will be available in all US Apple Store locations and the US Apple Store online. 

Vision Pro starts at $3,499 with 256 GB of storage, and those interested in pre-ordering one will be able to do so on January 19 at 5 am PST. You can’t wear glasses while using the system, but if you require vision correction, you can pay an additional $99-$146 for a lens insert that magnetically attaches to the device.

The big picture: Early reviews for Vision Pro have been generally positive, but $3,500 is a lot of money to spend on a headset. For comparison, Meta’s most advanced mixed reality headset, the Meta Quest Pro, starts at $999.

As others pointed out soon after Vision Pro’s unveiling, it’s not clear how much demand there will be for such an expensive mixed reality headset, even if it is more advanced than any other — but with the release now just weeks away, we won’t have to wait long to find out.

We’d love to hear from you! If you have a comment about this article or if you have a tip for a future Freethink story, please email us at [email protected].

Related
What will it take for smart glasses to replace smartphones?
Smart glasses that combine personal computing, AI, and augmented reality could be the next life-changing consumer tech device. Here’s how.
How Brilliant Labs CEO is creating a “symbiosis of humanity and artificial intelligence”
CEO Bobak Tavangar discusses the philosophy behind Brilliant’s latest device, Frame, and his vision for the future of AI.
OpenBCI’s new VR headset reacts to your brain and body
OpenBCI is reshaping the relationship between humans and the virtual world with Galea Beta, a headset that measures the body and brain.
Why Apple won’t call the Vision Pro “virtual reality”
Apple has forbidden developers from using “VR,” “AR,” or “MR” to describe their Vision Pro apps. That’s a mistake.
Tech hacks the nervous system to bring touch to virtual reality
Afference’s Phantom conducts electrical signals through nerves in the fingers to convince your brain it feels objects in virtual spaces.
Up Next
A man using a machine to control a surgical robot. Wires are connected to the back of his head.
Subscribe to Freethink for more great stories