Apple’s new VR headset, Vision Pro, hasn’t thrilled the crowd, but for now, that’s not the goal

Apple’s new Vision Pro mixed reality headset has caused quite a stir.

Announcement on this year Global Developers Conferencechef says Tim Kok the virtual and augmented reality headset does allow users “See, hear and interact with digital content just as if it were in your physical space […] seamless blending of the real and virtual world”.

The Vision Pro is the first new product category Apple has introduced since the Apple Watch in 2014. It marks the company’s foray into spatial calculation. analysts, markets And consumers have responded quickly – and not all positively.

On one side has been the headset commended for are technical features. It’s less clunky than competitors’ offerings and has a range of advanced capabilities, including hand and eye tracking, and the seamless combination of virtual and augmented reality.

Others, however, can’t help but point to the hefty US$3,500 price tag – and the fact that the general public Just no embraced mixed reality headsets.

The demand for these headsets is decreasing worldwide. Less than nine million units were shipped in 2022 (usually by metaApple’s biggest competitor in this category).

Despite that, Meta sees spatial computing as a big part of the tech future market analysts and critics call for the other way around deserted. Last week it released the Quest 3 for a relatively low price of US$499. With continued heavy spending on the metaverse, developers of Quest 3 Reality Labs posted an operating loss of $3.99 billion in the first quarter of 2023.

So if there’s no question, who is Apple targeting?

While Meta’s recent history may seem like a cautionary tale, timing and strategy are crucial when it comes to technological innovation. And compared to Meta, Apple’s strategy seems sensible.

The Apple Vision Pro glasses

The Apple Vision Pro glasses

Apple is probably betting that the app developer community will provide it with the use cases it should turn the Vision Pro (and subsequent iterations) into its next big revenue generator – and perhaps change the way we interact with this technology forever.

Letting developers build exciting additional offerings such as apps and device add-ons would give Apple a springboard to convince users of the Vision Pros value. But this won’t work without developer buy-in, leading us to believe that the Vision Pro is (at least for now) aimed at Apple’s 34 million registered app developersrather than the wider user market.

It is expected that many of the apps in the App Store will work Vision operating system, the operating system of the Vision Pro, by the time the product is launched. Apple is already support developers with programs and tools to redesign apps for compatibility with the Vision Pro and create new ones.

Users are drawn to a product that offers more app variety, and their migration to it has sparked developer interest even more. Usually this becomes a self-reinforcing cycle. Such multiplication of value to consumers, coupled with Apple’s manufacturing capabilities, could allow the Vision Pro to dominate.

And this is not just speculation; Apple has used this approach before.

Leverage an app-driven ecosystem

Apple has a history of exploiting its app-driven ecosystem business model to give its products the upper hand. An early example of this was the iPod and iTunes, in which the Apple Music Store, cloud connectivity, and massive storage capacity (at the time) created an environment that locked users in.

More importantly, with the sophistication of the hardware and software, the ease of use and the novelty of the experience, users were happy to be locked in.

This approach has been repeated over and over with other Apple products, such as the Apple Watch. Again, Apple brought innovation by linking the hardware to other devices and systems, introducing unique features and offering high-quality apps to spark interest.

The competition is heating up

Ultimately, users will judge the value of the Vision Pro through a combination of objective and subjective information. According to initial reviews, the Vision Pro works well and uses Apple branding and marketing tactics to further create a perception of value.

All things considered, Apple’s entry into the mixed reality market poses a major threat to competitors. It has a track record of building hardware at scale and at increasingly affordable prices. And let’s not forget the base of some two billion active devices that the Vision Pro can pair with.

Apple’s massive ecosystem — built on devices, apps, developers, and manufacturing partners — won’t run dry anytime soon. And it is precisely by its very existence that the Vision Pro has a chance of success.The conversation

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