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If Apple’s Vision Pro wasn’t for you, we’d feel terrible

Never met. Never spoke. The Vision Pro isn’t for you, I’m sure. It’s a gamble. It’s not for most people, like you.

The headset costs $3,500. Most people know a product’s price, so it’s probably too expensive. Vision Pro is

The media, including us, reported it. Apple sells consumer goods. For decades, the company has charged premium prices, but $3,500 isn’t a consumer price. Vision Pro isn’t for consumers.

You might have thought otherwise before the event. Apple debuts such things at global events like this. You probably heard that Meta and HTC were the company’s next big product categories. Yesterday’s presentation reinforced them. Vision Pro ads featured people wearing it at home.

WWDC’s “D” is overlooked in headlines. This developer-focused event is like Google I/O and Microsoft Build. A “Developers State of the Union” followed the first keynote, and the rest of the week was dedicated to iOS, macOS, and other sessions. The Vision Pro is not for most people, unlike the new MacBook Air. For now, consider this a developer device.

Apple rarely does this. When it does, it rarely positions the product as multipurpose. It released the Mac Mini for developers to start building for the M1 chip. Secret partnerships limit content development. Launching an app store requires more.

“Pro” is also key. The current lineup has diluted the word. AirPods Pro: more professional? Are they more expensive and better? Pro means something else here. The $3,500 developer/business unit After 7–8 years of development, this is the first device. The overengineered device may be unsure of its market fit.

It launches with Disney+, but the gaming experience is lacking. Apple promises a TV-like experience, not AR or VR. This platform needs experiences, not app ports. Pro implies a future non-Pro headset. Despite long-rumored rumors, such a device won’t likely be released until late 2024.

Apple is in trouble. Shareholders want a product after seven years of development. They’re likely pushing the company to market this as more than a developer kit before a consumer product. Apple launches a “spatial computing” device to millions with well-produced ELO ads that could be iPhone ads.

Apple also shows selected reporters. Yesterday, Matthew tried. The consensus is predictable: This thing is neater and works better than expected, but I’m still not sure who or what it’s for. That will pique interest, but few will pay $3,500. A new computing paradigm requires a big leap of faith. Even if the non-Pro version is cheaper, that will remain an issue. Demos in Apple Stores may help, but even for Apple, a critical mass will be hard to achieve.

Enterprise remains intriguing. Apple didn’t start with that pitch because it wasn’t expected. But Magic Leap, HTC, and Meta have publicly realized that enterprise is where the money is and have pivoted in that direction. There are applications and deeper pockets.

The price announcement drew applause. The company misplayed its hand by 1) targeting consumers and 2) not having a cheaper version ready. However, shareholders’ expectations may have constrained it. It hopes excitement and interest will get it there.

Apple’s reality distortion field has been discussed for decades. A mixed reality headset embodies this idea. However, it must be experienced to be believed, and it will take a lot of work, time, more content, new framing, and lower pricing to give more users that experience.


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