Apple Vision Pro review roundup: Is Apple's $3,499 "futuristic" headset worth the hype?

Apple's latest tech is now out.

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Key notes

  • Apple Vision Pro is now out.
  • Journalists and several tech publications have gotten early access for review.
  • Read a round up of some of them here.

Apple Vision Pro has finally arrived today, January 30, just a few days before its worldwide availability on February 2. Some tech journalists and publications have got their hands on the latest tech.

Apple’s hottest product at the moment boasts two micro-OLED displays with a resolution of 23 million pixels per eye, 90Hz refresh rate, and adaptive eye tracking and foveated rendering. 

From the inside, you get a headset that’s powered by a dual-chip design with an Apple M2 chip, a dedicated R1 chip for sensor input, 12 cameras for eye and head movement tracking, and three storage variants up to 1TB.

The price tag starts at $3,499, but is it worth the hype? Since pre-orders began on January 19, Apple collected somewhere in the ballpark of 160,000 and 180,000 Vision Pro units within the first week of pre-order.

Here, let’s take a look at some of the reviews made by journalists and tech creators, and see what they had to say about Meta Quest’s number-one competitor.

The Verge’s Nilay Patel says “It’s magic until it’s not.” TL;DR, Vision Pro is impressive, but feels “isolated.” It’s the best passthrough headset in the market, but it can be impractical for some who, for example, like to keep their hair while using it, and it’s better suited as a simulator or developer kit for future AR glasses. 

CNET feels that Vision Pro is still an “unfinished future,” giving it a 7.8 out of 10 score. CNET’s Scott Stein says that everything feels fluid and that it “blends the real and virtual worlds impressively.” However, the hand-eye interface doesn’t feel as good, and it does not work well for users who wear glasses.

And, of course, just like any other Apple product, Vision Pro feels overpriced, especially since it lacks native apps for popular streaming services like Netflix and YouTube, which could be a deal-breaker for many potential buyers.

Mark Spoonauer from Tom’s Guide finds that the battery “can get in the way” of Vision Pro performances.

“The aluminum battery on the Vision Pro always needs to be with you to use the headset, which is not great. So you’ll need to put it in your pocket while standing or next to you while sitting. It’s 12.4 ounces, which is heavier than an iPhone 15 Pro Max (7.8 ounces).”

“And while the cord is long enough most of the time, if you’re really immersed in a game or other experience and you move suddenly you could accidentally tug the battery off a table or couch onto the floor.”

CNBC’s Todd Haselton was loving the experience but felt that the price could get in the way. He says, “Apple’s real opportunity will materialize when it finds a way to mass produce the Vision Pro at closer to $2,000, or less. Until then, it may be a niche product. But the experience blows everything else out of the water.”