Appleʼs last major reveal in history was the iPhone itself with an iconic presentation by the legendary Steve Jobs in 2007.
Today, with much less hype, due certainly because of a very vanilla (not to say boring) CEO Tim Cook, was introduced a new leap for mainstream technology, in front of an empty audience, the “Apple Vision Pro”, a wearable AR and VR headset. (Photo above, video below)
Vision Pro is both an AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality) device. It can switch between augmented and full virtual reality using a dial.
Vision Pro is controller-free. You browse the operating system called visionOS simply by looking at it. You can then use your fingers to tap to select, and flick to scroll. You can also give voice commands.
The headset has a glass front and an aluminum frame, containing five sensors, 12 cameras, a 4K display… for each eye. Apple says that the display delivers video in 4K. You can stretch the video and make it feel like you are in a huge movie theater fro; anywhere.
The headset glasses (which Apple fancily calls a “Light Seal” lol) and strap (the “Head Band”) are cloth-lined and modular. Apple says they can flex to fit to a variety of face shapes and head sizes. The Head Band is ribbed and fits around the back of your head (it is possible to swap different sizes and styles of band, of course).
For people wearing glasses, Apple is partnering with Zeiss which created custom optical inserts that magnetically attach to the lenses .
The device has an external battery that lasts up to two hours and can connect via a “supple woven cable” so it slips into a pocket. Not enough to watch movies shown in the presentation like “Avatar 2” (3h12) or “Everything Everywhere All At Once” (2h19), In that case you are better off plugging it into external power so you can use it all day.
The system uses the ultra fast custom Apple chip M2, as well as a new chip called the R1.
In AR mode, you’re also not, isolated from people around you. The headset displays your eyes with a system called EyeSight to the person looking at you. If you’re in full VR, a glowing screen will obscure them to suggest you’re not available.
The device uses passthrough video that lets you see the real world in full color, and you can project 3D objects into real space, including pulling objects out into the real world.
For video calls, since you are wearing this object on your head and therefore hiding you, a digital “persona” of you is created by scanning your face. This super realistic avatar is then shown as you to the person you are having a call with. Groundbreaking or creepy, you choose .
For security the OpticID scans your iris to unlock the device.
Apple Vision Pro will cost 3500 USD. It will be released in early 2024 in the USA and shortly after everywhere else.
APPLE ALSO ANNOUNCED ITS OPERATING SYSTEMS YEARLY UPGRADES
June is also the moment when Apple reveals the updates it will bring in September to its whole software lineup. In the most underwhelming year to date, here are the most relevant ones below:
iPhone (iOS 17) is getting a standby mode which allows you to display info while in horizontal.As well as personalized contact photos. (lol? / WTF)
iPad (iPadOS 17) and Macs (MacOS) get widgets that you can put on the homescreen.
Apple TV (tvOS) is getting Facetime so you can make call directly on your TV.
Also, Macbook Air is finally getting a decent size screen (15 inches).