Apple is still yet to give an exact release date for its Vision Pro headset, only saying that it will arrive sometime next year. Now, the AR device’s manufacturing and supply woes come to light in a report from the Financial Times, albeit with little movement on that release window/
In part, this looks to be due to the massive complexity of the device, with its next-gen screens packed into an absurdly small enclosure. Apple reportedly is "unhappy with the supplier's productivity," especially with the "yield of micro-OLEDS that are free of defects."
Vision Pro suffering
Those micro-OLED screens in the prototype devices that Apple had available for WWDC attendees to try, came from Sony and TSMC, or Taiwan Semi-Conductor. The screens are used on the inside of the device, giving users their view of the outside world and overlaying the user interface on top. They're also on the outside of the device, displaying the unnerving image of the user's eyes to those around, making sure that they can see where the user is looking in augmented reality.
The Financial Times says that "two people close to Apple, and Luxshare" have said "it was preparing to make fewer than 400,000 units in 2024." Two other unnamed manufacturers are pegged to make a further 150,000 and 130,000 units over the year – a far cry from Apple's initial internal 1mn sales target for the first year. This is just another step in the lengthy story of Vision Pro, after suffering setbacks over the course of its development.
The second generation of the headset has also now be reportedly pushed back, as the more affordable version – although both aren't doing much to allay manufacturers' fears that the device is going to do little to their bottom line. One analyst, Eddie Han from Taiwan-based research company Isaiah Research, says to the Financial Times that "Apple has not made a better product than the industry imagined . . . the manufacturers’ confidence is not high."
The Vision Pro remains with a 2024 release date, however – although an exact date has not yet been given.
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As the Buying Guides and Deals writer for iMore, Tammy puts over a decade of experience in finding the best prices of Apple products to work, helping you save money on the equipment that you want. An audiophile at heart, she loves all things audio and visual, but you’ll also find her drooling over the latest Macs and MacBooks. With a Masters in screenwriting, Tammy likes to spend her free time writing feature-length and TV screenplays or driving digital cars around virtual circuits, to varying degrees of success. Just don't ask her about AirPods Max - you probably won't like her answer.