Apple’s new Vision Pro mixed reality headset is set to launch in the United States on February 2 with a starting price of $3,499. Surprisingly, the Apple Vision Pro did not sell out on its launch day, despite having very limited availability. While initially limited to the United States, the device’s popularity has resulted in shipping estimates stretching into March.
The Apple Vision Pro has attracted attention and controversy because it is not a wireless device; it comes with an external battery. There is speculation that Apple may have intentionally excluded the battery pack from photos of journalists wearing the Vision Pro, possibly for aesthetic reasons. Apple openly discloses the two-hour battery life and the ability to use the headset while charging.
The device is offered in three capacities, starting at $3,500 for the base 256GB model, going up to $3,699 for the 512GB model, and topping out at $3,899 for the 1TB model. While the 256GB variant quickly became backordered to March and beyond on launch day, the initial supplies of the higher capacity 512GB and 1TB models did not sell out.
According to Apple supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple might have had only 60,000 to 80,000 Vision Pro units available at launch day. Despite the device’s high starting price, pundits expected it to quickly sell out. However, it seems that even with Apple’s strong brand and marketing, the Vision Pro is facing challenges in gaining traction.
On the day after launch, YouTuber Aaron Zollo noted that both the higher capacity Vision Pro units were still available for in-store pick-up. However, as of the latest update, in-store pick-up is no longer an option, and all models are showing shipping times slipping to 5–6 weeks. Despite being available only in the US, Apple has been generating hype around the device, positioning it as the herald of the “era of spatial computing.”
Pre-launch media reviews have raised concerns about the weight of the Vision Pro, comparable to a 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Additionally, there are reports of underwhelming apps and experiences at launch, with Apple developing only 15 spatialized stock apps for the device. Third-party interest seems to be low, with major platforms like Netflix, YouTube, Spotify, and others indicating they have no plans to create spatialized versions of their apps for the Vision Pro.
Here’s a simplified specs table for the Apple Vision Pro
|February 2, 2024
|256GB, 512GB, 1TB
|Up to 2 hours
|Can be used while charging
|Not wireless; comes with an external battery
|Initial limited availability, stretching into March
|Launch Day Availability
|Surprisingly not sold out despite limited availability
|Initially available, now showing shipping times of 5–6 weeks
|Total Available Units at Launch
|Estimated 60,000 to 80,000 units
|Hype and Marketing
|Positioned as heralding the “era of spatial computing”
|Comparable to a 12.9-inch iPad Pro
|Concerns raised about underwhelming apps and experiences
|Major platforms like Netflix, YouTube, Spotify, etc., indicate no plans for spatialized versions