Apple announced the Vision Pro release date earlier this week, right on cue. Rumors and common sense dictated that Apple would try to drop this big Vision Pro announcement at this particular time. CES 2024 is in full swing, the place where Apple is never present with product announcements. CES would also be the place where other potential Vision Pro rivals get unveiled.
Also, Vision Pro reports kept saying that the Vision Pro launch would mimic the Apple Watch. Initially, Apple will require in-store appointments to finalize a Vision Pro purchase, which might involve custom fittings. Some people might also need corrective lenses. But, fast-forward to Apple’s announcement, there’s nothing in it to suggest that Vision Pro buyers will need in-store fittings.
If anything, Apple’s newest disclosures seem to indicate that you’ll have everything you need in the box to get a great Vision Pro fit.
Apple says in the press release that Vision Pro preorders will start on January 19th. Moreover, Apple says that the “Vision Pro will be available beginning Friday, February 2nd, at all US Apple Store locations and the US Apple Store online.” That seems to imply you’ll be able to buy a Vision Pro online after February 2nd without coming to an Apple retail store for a fitting.
The custom fit
Later in the announcement, Apple addresses the Vision Pro design and the need for a perfect fit. But it also implies users have options in the box to ensure a perfect fit:
Apple Vision Pro is designed as a modular system so users can personalize their fit. A singular piece of three-dimensionally formed, laminated glass gently curves around the user’s face and flows into the custom aluminum alloy frame.
The Light Seal is made of a soft textile and comes in a range of shapes and sizes, flexing to conform to a user’s face for a precise fit.
Flexible straps ensure audio remains close to the user’s ears, while the included Solo Knit Band and Dual Loop Band allow users to find the optimal fit for them.
For those with vision correction needs, ZEISS Optical Inserts are available with a prescription or as readers that magnetically attach to Vision Pro, allowing users to take full advantage of the display’s incredible sharpness and clarity.
What’s in the Vision Pro box
As for the contents of the Vision Pro box, you’ll find it in the announcements footnotes:
Apple Vision Pro comes with a Solo Knit Band and Dual Loop Band — giving users two options for the fit that works best for them. Apple Vision Pro also includes a Light Seal, two Light Seal Cushions, an Apple Vision Pro Cover for the front of the device, Polishing Cloth, Battery, USB-C Charge Cable, and USB-C Power Adapter.
The Solo Knit Band and Dual Loop Band are the accessories that let you place the Vision Pro on your head. We’ve only seen the former in Apple’s demos. But Apple mentions both of them on the Vision Pro product page on its website.
The Light Seal and Light Seal Cushions are the other key Vision Pro components for a great fit. While the previous accessories help with weight distributions, the Light Seal ones should ensure that no light gets in. I’d suspect this is where custom fittings will be needed, especially if a face scan is involved. But Apple makes no mention of this in the press announcement.
Why I hope we don’t need in-store appointments
Maybe Apple will offer buyers the option of coming in for a fitting once the preorder is placed. Or maybe Apple is confident the accessories it included in the box are good enough.
The latter scenario would better suit Apple, as it could increase the pace of sales. Having to fit each Vision Pro unit in a store will consume more time than shipping the Vision Pro to buyers directly. Maybe Apple would offer buyers options to exchange Light Seal components later if they’re not suitable for their faces.
As a would-be Vision Pro buyer, I prefer the scenario where Apple has the Vision Pro preorders shipped by February 2nd. That’s because I actually can’t get the spatial computer right now. I’m waiting for its European launch. The faster Apple is done with the US demand, the sooner it can move to international markets.
We’ll learn exactly how deliveries will happen once buyers start preordering the Vision Pro next week.