Apple’s Vision Pro headset will cost a pretty penny (Apple says it will set you back $3,500) and this has sparked a wave of speculation that a cheaper version may be on the way. Now, we have an idea of how much it will cost – and it still looks very expensive.
Write in the weekly Newsletter Turn on, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman claims that Apple “has internally discussed prices ranging from $1,500 to $2,500” for low-cost models. That’s still a lot more than competing devices like the Meta Quest Pro, so it seems Apple is hoping the quality of its product will outweigh the price concerns of potential users.
How does Apple lower its costs? Gurman believes there is some plan for that. This includes “using lower resolution displays and iPhone processors rather than Mac chips,” as well as reducing the number of external cameras and sensors.
Apple may also ditch Vision Pro’s EyeSight feature, according to Gurman. This displays the view of the headset wearer to outside observers, which Apple believes helps create a connection between Vision Pro users and those around them. Since it is a proprietary Vision Pro, its development and implementation will likely be expensive, which explains why it will probably be discontinued.
Interestingly, Gurman noted that Apple has moved its staff away from developing the pair of devices augmented reality (AR) glasses and a cheaper Vision Pro headset. This apparently happened because Apple deemed the glasses “too technically challenging,” and this doesn’t bode well for the wearable’s future.
This is in stark contrast to reports from Ming-Chi Kuo, another well-known Apple leaker. According to Kuo, Apple may have abandoned the cheaper Vision Pro entirely. Of course, Gurman isn’t sure that will happen.
In addition to the cheaper headset, Apple is also working on a second-generation Vision Pro, Gurman said. Compared to the first edition, this edition “has all the great features but is smaller and lighter, making it more comfortable to wear.” It will also insert prescription lenses directly into the device rather than using inserts, Gurman claims.
If Gurman is right about cheaper headsets, this would be good news for users who aren’t interested in the sky-high prices of the standard models. But the $2,500 price tag won’t make it the “cheap” device some might hope for. We’ll have to see if this is enough to convince wary customers to hand over their money.