The budget Apple Vision Pro model is expected to be priced between $1,500 and $2,500 and may lack certain features.
Apple Vision Pro was officially announced four months ago. Since this time, Meta Quest 3, a mixed-reality headset that shares some similarities with the Vision Pro, has been released. Meta Quest 3 is priced much lower, at only a seventh of the price of the Vision Pro, so some may consider it a budget alternative to Apple’s headset. However, it appears that Apple wants to release its own affordable mainstream headset in the coming years.
The $3,500 price tag of the Vision Pro may not suit everyone, but it enables Apple to create a powerhouse device with premium features. It has been known for a while that Apple plans to launch a more budget-friendly version of the headset, but it was unknown what exact premium features would be cut from the device to make it affordable.
Mark Gurman, a trusted Apple analyst, suggests that Apple is likely to exclude the EyeSight External Display feature and the Mac-grade chip from the budget version of the Apple Vision Pro. Earlier this year, it was reported that the most expensive components of the Vision Pro included the camera and sensor array, a dual processor unit housing the M2 and R1 processors, and two micro-OLED displays, each boasting a resolution of 4k x 4k. It seems reasonable for Apple to make some cuts in those components.
Apple’s latest A17 Pro chip, featured in the iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, comes with a GPU that is approximately 60% as powerful as the M2 GPU. Once Apple launches the budget version of the Apple Vision Pro, it’s possible that the mobile chip could rival the M2 in terms of performance.
Mark Gurman also mentioned that Apple intends to use lower-resolution displays and remove a few cameras from the headset. This move is part of Apple’s strategy to potentially reduce the price to as low as $1,500. To put that in perspective, the original price of the Meta Quest Pro headset was $1,500, which was met with controversy and considered a massive price to pay for the VR headset. The price of the Quest Pro was later reduced to $1,000 just a few months after its launch.
However, Apple has further plans for the upcoming Vision Pro headset. As Gurman writes, “That headset will have all the bells and whistles but be smaller and lighter, making it more comfortable to wear.” He continues, “The company is also looking to integrate prescription lenses directly into the device, simplifying the design.“
Earlier leaks indicated that both the Budget Apple Vision Pro and the next Pro version would launch in 2025. However, this rumor contradicts Ming-Chi Kuo’s report, who suggested that the next Vision Pro headset might not arrive until 2027 at the latest, and the budget Apple Vision Pro could be canceled for now. Apple appears to have diverse plans for its Vision headset lineup, but to replicate the iPhone’s success, it might need to offer these devices at significantly lower and budget-friendly prices sooner or later.