Advanced Television

Apple unveils Vision Pro headset

June 6, 2023

By Colin Mann

Describing it as a “revolutionary spatial computer” Apple has unveiled Apple Vision Pro, a headset that it says seamlessly blends digital content with the physical world, while allowing users to stay present and connected to others.

“Vision Pro creates an infinite canvas for apps that scales beyond the boundaries of a traditional display and introduces a fully three-dimensional user interface controlled by the most natural and intuitive inputs possible — a user’s eyes, hands, and voice,” explains Apple.

“Featuring visionOS, the world’s first spatial operating system, Vision Pro lets users interact with digital content in a way that feels like it is physically present in their space. The breakthrough design of Vision Pro features an ultra-high-resolution display system that packs 23 million pixels across two displays, and custom Apple silicon in a unique dual-chip design to ensure every experience feels like it’s taking place in front of the user’s eyes in real time,” it adds.

“Today marks the beginning of a new era for computing,” declared Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “Just as the Mac introduced us to personal computing, and iPhone introduced us to mobile computing, Apple Vision Pro introduces us to spatial computing. Built upon decades of Apple innovation, Vision Pro is years ahead and unlike anything created before — with a revolutionary new input system and thousands of ground-breaking innovations. It unlocks incredible experiences for our users and exciting new opportunities for our developers.”

“Creating our first spatial computer required invention across nearly every facet of the system,” added Mike Rockwell, Apple’s vice president of the Technology Development Group. “Through a tight integration of hardware and software, we designed a standalone spatial computer in a compact wearable form factor that is the most advanced personal electronics device ever.”

According to Apple, the Vision Pro brings a new dimension to powerful, personal computing by changing the way users interact with their favourite apps, capture and relive memories, enjoy stunning TV shows and movies, and connect with others in FaceTime.

Apple says that with two ultra-high-resolution displays, Apple Vision Pro can transform any space into a personal movie theatre with a screen that feels 100 feet wide and an advanced Spatial Audio system. Users can watch movies and TV shows, or enjoy stunning three-dimensional movies. Apple Immersive Video offers 180-degree high-resolution recordings with Spatial Audio, and users can access an exciting line-up of immersive videos that transport them to entirely new places.

“Spatial computing makes new types of games possible with titles that can span a spectrum of immersion and bring gamers into all-new worlds. Users can also play over 100 Apple Arcade games on a screen as large as they want, with incredible immersive audio and support for popular game controllers,” says Apple.

Built on the foundation of decades of engineering innovation in macOS, iOS, and iPadOS, visionOS was designed from the ground up to support the low-latency requirements of spatial computing. The result is a revolutionary operating system that delivers powerful spatial experiences that can take advantage of the space around the user, unlocking new opportunities at work and at home.

Apple Vision Pro starts at $3,499 (€3,268) and will be available early in 2024 on and at Apple Store locations in the US, with more countries coming later in the year.

According to Paolo Pescatore, TMT Analyst at PP Foresight, Apple Vision Pro  was “undoubtedly” the star of the show. “Make no mistake, this is a wow moment for the company and the consumer electronics industry,” he declared. “Today marks Apple’s biggest device launch in a while (since the Watch) that will change the way we interact and engage with content forever. Apple has worked tirelessly to ensure it offers a seamless and consistent, intuitive experience that goes a step further than other products in the market, and this is no exception,” he suggests.

“The price point will grab headlines. While some will feel it is too high, this is a premium high spec device that developers are crying out for. There are no other accessories required due to the very nature of its design and attention to detail,” he notes. “While price will always be a factor, creating demand is far more complex than lowering prices.”

“Launching next year seems a long way away; the product, services offering, and experiences will evolve considerably. The move to showcase it now gives Apple time to generate appeal among developers and make it the platform of choice,” he advises.

“In time this will be another key revenue generating segment for Apple, which offers plentiful scope for growth among enterprises and consumers. This new platform will generate appeal among enterprises; a key target market for Apple,” he predicts.

“This new device will be paramount for telcos in their quest to bundle more devices, services and subscriptions and drive higher volumes and revenue. It will be launched at a critical time when telcos will be switching on 5G standalone and other new network features that will help to enhance the mixed reality experience. These new generations of devices, technologies and networks represent a window of opportunity to drive uptake and sway customers from rival platforms and devices,” he concludes.

“There have been many VR and AR headsets released over the past decade but this is Apple’s first, and Apple has always focused on getting the user experience right, at the right time,” says Simon Windsor, CEO of virtual production studio Dimension.

“With the Vision Pro and VisionOS Apple appears to be offering the complete package. The Vision Pro promises to revolutionise computing via a dual-mode device (AR & VR), which uses gesture interfaces that will feel totally natural and intuitive to people (voice, sight, hand gestures) and which adapts to the environment, type of use-case, and the people around you.”

“What’s truly exciting, and what I believe will be of key importance to mainstream adoption, is the enormous play that Apple has just made for the living room.”

“Apple has the ecosystem to entirely reimagine how we experience film and TV via the combination of Vision Pro, Apple spatial audio, Apple TV and the App store. This will change how we enjoy our favourite films and shows, ultimately enabling us to step through the frame and be present in these.”

“It starts by replacing our traditional physical TV, with the ability to select your screen size and virtual viewing environment but beyond that we’ll see 3D content extending out of the screen enveloping viewers in full virtual reality. For audiences this will mean a higher quality and radically more immersive viewing future. For filmmakers and storytellers this unleashes limitless creative possibilities and will see creators increasingly embrace 3D and mixed reality production techniques.”


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