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Apple Shifts Focus to Affordable Headset After Reportedly Pausing Vision Pro 2 Development, Cheaper Headset Set for 2025 Launch

Apple calls the Vision Pro its “spatial computer” which enables users to experience apps in an AR and VR environment: reports surfaced suggesting Apple has halted development on the second generation of its high-end mixed reality headset, the Vision Pro 2. This decision appears to be driven by lower-than-expected sales of the original Vision Pro, which launched in 2023.

Apple’s foray into mixed reality, a technology that blends augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) experiences, came with the introduction of the Vision Pro. The device, marketed as a “spatial computer” by Apple, allows users to interact with apps and content in both AR and VR environments.

However, the high price tag – starting at $3,499 – may have limited its appeal. Initially available only in the United States, Apple later expanded sales to eight additional countries, including China, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Despite this wider availability, analyst reports indicate the headset hasn’t met sales expectations.

According to industry sources cited by The Information, this lackluster performance has led Apple to suspend development of the Vision Pro 2. While the high-end version seems to be on hold, Apple isn’t abandoning the mixed reality market entirely.

The reports suggest the company is now focusing its efforts on creating a more affordable version of the Vision Pro. This headset is expected to launch sometime in late 2025 and would likely come with a lower price tag by sacrificing some of the features found in the original model.

Details on the specific features being cut are scarce, but it’s likely that the cheaper headset will have less powerful hardware or a simpler design to bring down the production cost. Apple has reportedly shifted resources from the Vision Pro 2 team to another group tasked with making the existing technology more affordable.

This shift in strategy highlights the challenges Apple faces in the mixed reality market. While the technology holds immense potential, its high cost remains a significant barrier to entry for many consumers. By offering a more budget-friendly option, Apple hopes to broaden the appeal of its mixed reality headset and compete more effectively with rivals like Meta.

The success of this new headset will likely depend on how much Apple can reduce the price without sacrificing user experience. Striking the right balance between affordability and functionality will be crucial for Apple to establish itself in this emerging market.

While the future of the Vision Pro 2 remains uncertain, Apple’s decision to prioritize an affordable headset suggests the company believes mixed reality has the potential to become a mainstream technology. The next year will be interesting to see how Apple navigates this market and what features it prioritizes in its more accessible mixed reality offering.

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