The launch of Apple’s highly anticipated mixed reality headset, the Apple Vision Pro, is now expected to take place in March 2024, according to insights from Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. Originally aimed for a January 2024 release, the headset’s launch has been delayed due to the need for final distribution plans and additional testing, as detailed in Gurman’s Power On newsletter.
Apple had initially planned to kick off sales of the Vision Pro in the United States early next year, but with the revised launch schedule, it is now anticipated to debut sometime around March. The company is strategically managing the rollout of the headset, opting to sell it exclusively through Apple retail stores and its online platform.
The Vision Pro, priced at $3,499, comes with a variety of configurations, including lenses and different-size headbands. This diverse set of SKUs makes stocking the headset in stores challenging. Apple’s decision to limit availability to its own retail channels aligns with the company’s commitment to precision in the launch process.
Despite the production challenges and cuts to initial forecasts, Apple aims to showcase the Vision Pro’s unique features and capabilities at a spring event, similar to its approach with the Apple Watch. Gurman suggests that Apple may use this event to present not only the hardware but also highlight apps and features that were not ready for demonstration during the WWDC unveiling in June.
The intricate design of the Apple Vision Pro has posed manufacturing difficulties, leading to significant reductions in production forecasts. Apple now expects to manufacture about 400,000 units in 2024, with the initial launch limited to the United States. Additional international markets, including Canada and the UK, are expected to see the headset towards the end of the year.
As part of the preparation for the Vision Pro launch, select Apple retail employees in the United States have undergone specialized training at the Cupertino headquarters. Upon launch, flagship stores will feature dedicated Vision Pro hands-on areas, while other stores will have a limited number of units for customer demonstrations.
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Recent developments include the seeding of the 6th beta of visionOS, the software designed for the headset, featuring onboarding videos shown during the setup process. These indicators suggest that development work on the Apple Vision Pro is progressing, bringing consumers one step closer to experiencing the much-anticipated mixed reality device.