Apple’s ‘Vision’ For The Future Of Computing Will Augment The Mac, Not Replace It

FEATURE – The next big thing from Apple is finally here… (well… almost).

Apple’s new AR / VR headset — the Apple Vision Pro — is described by the Cupertino, California-based company as, “a revolutionary spatial computer that seamlessly blends digital content with the physical world, while allowing users to stay present and connected to others.”

Tim Cook Apple Vision Pro
Apple CEO, Tim Cook, stands next to Apple Vision Pro devices on display at WWDC 23. (Photo: Apple, Inc.)

Featuring visionOS, the world’s first spatial operating system, the Apple Vision Pro lets users interact with digital content in a way that feels like it is physically present in their space via a fully three-dimensional user interface controlled by the most natural and intuitive inputs possible — a user’s eyes, hands, and voice.

**AD: In the market for a new Mac? Consult the award-winning and exclusive price trackers on MacPrices for the lowest prices, best deals, and latest discounts from Apple (and, Apple Authorized Resellers). Pricing updated daily, seven days a week!

Not The Future

Kate Knibbs, a senior editor with Wired who writes about culture for the magazine, says that the Apple Vision Pro is not the future: nor is it a “revolutionary” gadget, either (no matter how confident Apple CEO, Tim Cook, looks when he says that it is).

“It’s a rare misfire, and a sign that Apple is losing its ability to turn tech-geek novelties into normie must-haves,” says Knibbs. “It doesn’t augur the future so much as suggest that Cupertino doesn’t have a clear view forward.”

According to Business Insider, those who attended WWDC 23 — Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (which was held back in June of this year) — and were able to try the Apple Vision Pro in-person have said that it’s a product in search of a purpose.

Business Insider points out that this was a similar sentiment surrounding the Apple Watch when it launched in 2015. Apple was throwing spaghetti at the wall (so to speak) and hoping it would stick by packing the device with a slew of features that people would want in a smartwatch.

Will Greenwald, a lead analyst with PCMag who writes about consumer electronics for the magazine, says that Apple’s plans for its AR / VR headset are focused on kickstarting an industry.

Greenwald feels that Apple has to come in and do for AR / VR headsets what it did for smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches. Additionally, Apple’s biggest hurdle will be making its ecosystem of VR-based apps attractive to consumers who don’t yet believe that virtual reality is a thing.

“Apple needs to release a headset that a huge part of the public can look at and say, ‘Oh, I get it now! That’s how VR can be used!’,” says Greenwald.

The Future (Of The Mac)

Ben Thompson, a noted technology analyst, believes that Apple’s new AR / VR headset is not just — per the report from Business Insider — a new computing platform but the future of: the Mac (and, quite possibly, a valuable accessory for the company’s desktop and notebook computers, too).

While the Apple Vision Pro will have a slew of features that users have come to rely on, with native support for Apple’s services such as iMessage and FaceTime? Thompson notes that the ability to extend the desktop of a Mac into a user’s surroundings effectively creates unlimited real estate, freeing up users from the limitations of their Macs’ displays (e.g., constantly having to toggle through different apps or placing two windows side-by-side).

“I do think that visionOS is much more compelling for productivity… thanks to the infinite canvas it enables,” says Thompson.

However, as Business Insider points out, Thompson doesn’t think people should sleep on the AR / VR headset’s ability to mirror a Mac’s screen. Furthermore, the technology analyst doesn’t believe that the Apple Vision Pro will replace the Mac anytime soon.
Business Insider agrees that, overall, it’s an interesting way to think about the Apple Vision Pro (as not just its own product, but one that increases the functionality and usefulness of the Mac).

In a press release for the Apple Vision Pro, Cook had this to say about the new device:

“Today marks the beginning of a new era for computing. Just as the Mac introduced us to personal computing — and iPhone introduced us to mobile computing — Apple Vision Pro introduces us to spatial computing. Built upon decades of Apple innovation, Vision Pro is years ahead and unlike anything created before. With a revolutionary new input system and thousands of groundbreaking innovations, it unlocks incredible experiences for our users… .”

MacPrices is a proud affiliate partner with some Apple retailers.

Boost Infinite