Apple is reportedly working on the next generation of its Vision Pro headsets, including a cheaper model for more mass-market appeal. This is despite the fact the first-generation $3,499 mixed-reality headset has yet to be released to the public.
Reports suggest that there are four different models in development with production on the initial samples set to begin in the second half of next year. This is likely so previews can be available for WWDC in 2025 and for release later that year.
First reported by DigiTimes at least one of the four new models will be a direct replacement for the first-generation model, and another will be an affordable version. It isn't clear what the other two models will be, but are likely variations on the high and low-end models, mirroring other Apple product categories.
What can we expect?
The biggest hope for a new generation Vision Pro will be in price. The first generation is expected to be priced higher than an impressive gaming rig — coming in above $3,400 — and that's for the entry model.
The reports suggest the cut-price model could be half the price of the current generation, putting it at about $1,700. This is still a hefty price tag compared to the Meta Quest 3 which is available for under $500, but comparable to a MacBook Pro.
The reduced price tag rumor comes from the bill of materials (BoM) document for the new headset. This is the price for the components and is half the price of the original.
This doesn't necessarily mean the new headset will be half the price of the current generation though. Apple could decide to take a hit and make it even cheaper, or go the opposite and make a greater margin on the more mass-market model.
What happens next?
Mass production of the first-generation Vision Pro is expected to start next month with 400,000 units, with Apple hoping to sell a million Vision Pro headsets in 2024.
Hitting that target will likely help the company decide what to do with the second generation.
Another report suggests that Apple may already be considering its third-generation models, suggesting it is planning for this to become a long-running product category and not just a throwaway "never released" flop like ApplePower.