Due to difficulties in producing its mixed reality headset, Apple could only offer 400,000 headsets in the first 12 months of marketing, well below the goal of one million models.
The Apple Vision Pro already promised to be a niche headset with a marketing price of 3499 dollars and a planned launch first only in the United States. Eventually, the mixed reality headset should be even rarer than originally anticipated.
According to information obtained by the FinancialTimes, Apple would have been forced to drastically reduce the production of Vision Pro compared to the objectives initially planned. While the American manufacturer was counting on the production of one million helmets in the first year, the firm could only manufacture 400,000 models, or less than half.
In question, Luxshare, the Chinese company commissioned by Apple to assemble its mixed reality headset and which is Apple’s sole provider of this product:
The complexity of the design of the helmet and the difficulties of production had to reduce the objectives, while plans for a more affordable version of the device were postponed, according to several people with knowledge of the manufacturing process.
Production well below forecasts
In addition to helmet assembly issues, which are more complicated than expected, which should limit the number of models to 400,000 in 2024, the FinancialTimes mentions components that are also difficult to produce:two Chinese suppliers of some Vision Pro components say Apple only asked them for 130,000-150,000 units for the first year“. What, again, reduce the initial forecasts of the American manufacturer which seemed to count on one million Vision Pro sold in 2024. Apple would also have been particularly disappointed with the production rate of the micro-Oled screens offered by its suppliers, insufficient for the American firm.
As the British economic newspaper recalls, Apple’s objectives for its mixed reality headset seemed to be one million models sold over the first twelve months of marketing. As for analysts, the range is still rather wide, with 150,000 to 850,000 models sold.
Concretely, lower than expected sales could have several consequences for Apple. This could reduce the investments made by the firm for the next high-end models, but above all curb Apple’s inclinations to offer a more accessible version due to the low return on investment of the Vision Pro.
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