On January 9th, Apple announced on its official website that Vision Pro pre-orders will begin at 5 AM Pacific Time on January 19, with the groundbreaking spatial computing device set to officially launch on February 2. A select group of lucky pre-order customers can expect to experience the device on the actual launch date.
As with the pre-ordering of new Apple iPhone models, Vision Pro pre-orders and launch day occur on a Friday local time.
As previously announced by Apple, the Vision Pro will first hit the market exclusively in the United States. Pre-orders starting on January 19 and the official launch on February 2 will be limited to the Apple US website and all of its retail stores in the country. Other markets will have to wait a bit longer.
Apple unveiled the Vision Pro last year with a starting price of $3,499, which converts to approximately 25,045 Chinese yuan. The company disclosed that the $3,499 version comes with 256GB of storage when announcing the pre-order and launch dates on Monday. Details about versions with larger storage capacities and their prices will be revealed on the beginning of the pre-orders on January 19.
Additionally, Apple has announced that a brand-new app store, already prepared for Vision Pro, offers over one million apps compatible with iOS and iPadOS. Users will also be able to try new experiences through the device’s unique capabilities.
The analyst community had already anticipated the January 19 pre-order and February 2 launch dates for Vision Pro. Ming-Chi Kuo, a well-known analyst for Apple products who has made several accurate predictions about new Apple products in recent years, forecasted in late December that significant shipments would begin in the first week of January, likely with products hitting Apple retail stores toward the end of January or early February.
A seasoned journalist with a long-term focus on Apple mentioned last week that the products were being shipped in small batches to U.S. warehouses, soon to be dispatched to retail stores, anticipating ample stock in the United States by the end of January to be available for the February launch.
Apple introduced the Vision Pro as its first head-mounted product at the Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5th last year. Touted as a revolutionary spatial computing device, it’s designed to seamlessly integrate digital content into the real world and offers a brand-new 3D interaction experience for the user.
In terms of hardware, Vision Pro features ultra-high precision displays, with two 23 million pixel microLED displays that support a wide color gamut and HDR. It boasts the most advanced spatial audio system where sound seems to flood in from all directions, with dual-driver units on each side providing personalized audio effects that adjust according to the environment. Additionally, the efficient eye-tracking system uses high-speed cameras and a ring of LEDs to project an invisible light pattern onto the user’s eyes for real-time intuitive feedback. Similar to other manufacturers’ head-mounted products, the Vision Pro is also equipped with an abundance of cameras and sensors, including 12 cameras, five sensors, and six microphones.
The Vision Pro features a unique dual-chip design, both of which are Apple’s own creations. The M2 chip delivers unparalleled performance while the new R1 chip processes the information from the cameras, sensors, and microphones to ensure content appears before the users without delay. Apple states that the R1 chip can stream new images to the display within 12 milliseconds, which is eight times faster than the blink of an eye.
On the software side, Vision Pro runs on the world’s first spatial operating system, visionOS. It features a new 3D interface that can be controlled through eyes, hand gestures, and voice commands, allowing digital content to appear as if it exists in the real world. The all-new app store enables users to explore apps and content developed by third parties, and a large number of apps already running on iPhones and iPads will operate smoothly on the new system immediately upon launch.
The upcoming Vision Pro can last up to two hours with an external high-performance battery and can be used all day when plugged into a power source.
Vision Pro is a significant new hardware product launched under CEO Tim Cook’s leadership since he took the helm at Apple. Cook believes that just as the Mac ushered us into the era of personal computing and the iPhone into the era of mobile computing, the Vision Pro will lead us into the era of spatial computing, delivering an exceptional experience for users and exhilarating new opportunities for developers.