Apple announces its first augmented reality headset

Apple has announced its first-ever augmented reality headset, the Apple Vision Pro.

It was the most anticipated announcement of the WWDC 2023 conference and Apple reserved it for the end of the event, with one of its “ one more thing » of which the manufacturer has the secret. After years of rumors, the manufacturer has finally unveiled its very first augmented reality headset, the Apple Vision Pro.

Like what the Meta Quest 3 or the PlayStation VR 2 can offer, the Apple Vision Pro is an augmented reality headset. It is thus equipped with multiple cameras facing outwards, but also with information coming from your eyes. Concretely, the helmet indeed uses an external screen which will allow people around you to see your eyes. Called EyeSight, this feature will adapt according to your immersion within an application.

Indeed, the Apple Vision Pro has a digital crown, like the Apple Watch, which will allow you to adjust the desired degree of immersion. Convenient for immersing yourself in a virtual world or simply keeping the interface of an application in front of you.

On the interaction side, Apple indicates that Vision Pro works simply using voice, eyes and hands, without requiring an additional controller. The headset will thus allow you to navigate simply with your fingers, by moving them, moving your hand or pinching them, without having to move them just in front of the headset.

Advanced management of immersion thanks to the “digital crown”

Regarding the interaction with its environment, the Vision Pro headset will allow you to display software windows as if they were around you, including with the shadows of application windows. The size of these windows can also be modified directly with the pinch of a finger. As on the Meta Quest, the idea is to transform its environment into a real virtual computer.

The Apple Vision Pro headset is also equipped with several speakers with spatial audio to make the most of movies and series. On this aspect, the immersion mode will give you the impression of being in a cinema or artificially reduce the brightness of the room.

If the Vision Pro’s home interface, Home View, will allow you to select applications, many of them are offered, whether it’s FaceTime for calls, shared documents, recording photos or videos or watching Apple TV+ videos. Of course, Vision Pro being a new device, Apple will require developers to use it to port their own applications. In the meantime, Apple has announced a partnership with Disney to integrate the Disney+ application on the Vision Pro.

A PC in the form of a ski mask

The Apple Vision Pro is designed with aluminum and fabric for added comfort. The helmet is also equipped with a ventilation system to prevent overheating – since contrary to what was anticipated, the intelligent part is not remote. For screens, Apple indicates up to 23 million pixels in total, 7.5 microns on the side, with the use of Micro-Oled technology. A definition higher than what can be found on 4K televisions – 8.3 million pixels in total. For audio management, Apple incorporates ” audio pods with dynamic transducers positioned on the tape and capable of handling spatial audio.

To ensure optimal comfort, Apple indicates that it has used thousands of faces to design the shape of its Vision Pro. The headband can also be easily adjusted and Apple has even thought of wearers of glasses with Zeiss magnetic lenses to wear the headset without worry even with binoculars.

On the front, the EyeSight function takes advantage of a 3D screen giving an impression of transparency. To capture the face, no camera is integrated into the mask, but the Vision Pro will be based on data from your face and infrared data.

The Apple Vision Pro is also equipped with an Apple M2 chip, but also a new Apple R1 chip to manage data from microphones, sensors and cameras in real time. The helmet also uses a Ray Tracing system to best reproduce the environment of a room and understand the textures.

Apple indicates up to two hours of battery use, only with a remote battery, and the possibility of using it plugged in when you are at home or near an outlet.

Apple Vision Pro price and availability

The Apple Vision Pro will be available in early 2024 for $3,499 in the United States. For the time being, no announcement specifically for France has been announced.

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