At Apple’s World Wide Developers Conference, the company unveiled updates to its iMac, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch models, but the announcement with the most buzz was the unveiling of the Apple Vision Pro.
- On Monday, Apple announced updates to its current iMac, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch models, including changes to voicemail options and data processing.
- However, tech enthusiasts eagerly awaited Apple’s long-promised virtual-reality headset unveiling.
- The Apple Vision Pro is an augmented-reality headset that Apple CEO Tim Cook will usher in a new era of spatial computing. It will be available for sale early next year for $3,499.
- The device allows the user to do many of the same tasks he would perform on his laptop on a virtual screen.
- Apple promoted the product for various uses, including in the office, working remotely, watching movies, and gaming.
- “So in the same way that Mac introduced us to personal computing and iPhone introduced us to mobile computing, Apple Vision Pro will introduce us to spatial computing,” Cook says.
Why it’s news
Apple’s headset resembles a pair of ski goggles and promises to “seamlessly” combine the digital and real world. According to Cook, “It’s the first Apple product you look through, and not at.”
While working with the device, users can still see the real world around them rather than just a virtual reality. Users can expand their screen to tune out a busy background if needed, but when it’s time to interact with the real world again, users can simply look through the glasses rather than take them off.
Though the device does feature a cord and battery pack, something Apple had hoped to avoid, it is controlled without a physical device. Users look at the virtual screen to select items and use hand motions to open apps or scroll down the screen.
Other developers have struggled to find practical applications for similar virtual reality headsets, but Apple suggests to its customers that its headset has applications ranging from entertainment to work.
With collaborative work features, users can Facetime coworkers and edit presentations in real-time while in the virtual space. Remote workers or traveling employees may also find the digital workspace helpful for working on the go.
Other virtual-reality headsets have largely been marketed for gaming. The Vision Pro also has some gaming capabilities, allowing users to expand their virtual screen and immerse themselves in the experience. Movie enthusiasts, too, may find Apple’s spatial audio and customizable screen size brings new life to their favorite media.
Apple also suggests that users may enjoy the Vision Pro in everyday life by demonstrating how it can capture video or images in the moment.
The release of the mixed-reality headset represents the final product of Apple’s multibillion-dollar investment. Some within the company have suggested that it will be the foundation of a world without iPhones, Bloomberg reports.
Despite Apple’s reputation for redefining technology with its versions of tech gadgets, some doubts surround the device.
Facebook parent company Meta Platforms has struggled to develop a satisfactory headset, despite its focus on the metaverse. In 2021, when Facebook became Meta, it aimed to create a line of VR headsets, but the company is no closer to that vision than it was years ago. Now, the company seems to be backtracking on its metaverse plans.
So far, Meta will likely be Apple’s main competitor in this virtual world.