Frankly...

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Smart Monitors On Faces

Despite reading more about the Apple Vision Pro, I have yet to warm up to the idea of strapping a headset on to my face, no matter the potential cost of the headset and the utility. I think back to the idea of one using notebook computers in meetings, many think that is rude or at the least too intrusive. While one can clearly take more detailed notes, there is a physical screen between oneself and other meeting participants. In this case tablets are more favorable because they can lie flat on table and be no more intrusive than a pad of paper.

While the Vision Pro does have a pass through mode that enables the wearer to see what is in front of them, it is obvious to others in the room that the wearer’s attention is not fully on them. Anything physically larger than regular glasses is going to send signals to others, just like the use of notebook computers in meetings and classrooms. Consequently in it’s current incarnation the Vision Pro is a very private device.

It’s true that over time the use of notebook computers has become more accepted and it happens now in nearly every meeting and probably every class in college, but that still doesn’t make it right. When Google first released Glass the debates about the social norms for their use started but never ended because the product really never gained acceptance, these social discussions, and probably laws, will need to restart. For example, I think it is worth serious discussion about whether one should ever be allowed to wear the Vision Pro on a plane, which is a place in which ones attention can mean life or death. Most expect Vision Pro to succeed mostly because it is from Apple, but even Apple is not immune to flops.

So, then, the question is at what price point and for what utility will the Vision Pro gain acceptance? Do you spend $1,000 or more on monitor on you desk? Some do, most do not. I think the price is going to have to be closer to $500 in order to generating real sales. I have no doubt that will happen, just like how 4K desktop monitors are affordable and thus dominant in sales. How long will it take for the price to come down, and might that be too long for the Vision Pro to gain acceptance? Money may be on Apple’s side, but we will see whether time is too.

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