After Apple unveiled its pricey metaverse headset, Vision Pro, the search for virtual reality (‘VR’), ‘mixed reality’ and ‘augmented reality’ soared 300 percent, 1,130 percent, and 545 percent. Latest findings from digital-adoption.com.
According to Apple, the Vision Pro is a spatial computer that seamlessly blends digital content into the physical world while allowing users to stay present and connected to others. The headset creates an infinite canvas for apps that scales beyond the boundaries of traditional display and introduces a fully three-dimensional user interface controlled by the most natural and intuitive inputs possible – a user’s eyes, hands, and voice.
The headset also gives iPhone and iPad developers the ability to easily plug their existing apps into the device’s operating system using familiar tools and frameworks. At the steep price of $3500, the Vision Pro is in stark contrast to headsets manufactured by Meta, Valve, Playstation, and HTC which sell at cheaper rates. Meta which dominates the headset market, accounting for 80 percent of all sales, sells its most upgraded Quest headset at $500.
More than raising price competition, Apple’s entry into the market also attracts new users’ interests in the metaverse which has seen growth stall in 2022. Data from NPD Group showed that sales of VR headsets in the US in 2022, declined 2 percent from a year earlier to $1.1 billion as of December. Worldwide shipments of VR headsets and augmented reality devices dropped by over 12 percent to 9.6 million in 2022.
With Apple in the market, consumers’ interest seems to be returning. Google Trends data show AI interest skyrocketed to an all-time high in May, climbing 619 percent since 2004. People have paid more attention to AI with interest doubling since the beginning of 2023, jumping from 17 million searches in January to 42 million in May.
“There has been a massive surge in AI interest this year. Apple’s announcement of Vision Pro has captured audiences at the right time when new AI technologies, like ChatGPT, have become accessible to almost anyone. The latest announcement from Apple could start to tip the balance and encourage more users to adopt this kind of advanced tech into their homes and working lives,” said a representative from digital-adoption.com.
Mark Zuckerberg was one of those left unimpressed by the capabilities of Vision Pro. The Meta CEO in a general meeting of the company, said while there were marked differences between the Vision Pro and Meta’s headsets, he will not be choosing the Apple headset.
“I think that their announcement really showcases the difference in the values and the vision that our companies bring to this in a way that I think is really important,” Zuckerberg said.
For Zuckerberg, Vision Pro was built for specific users who can afford the high price, but Meta’s focus was on building a headset and metaverse that was fundamentally social.