Silicon Valley dweller Apple is rumored to have axed major production forecasts for its newly-unveiled Vision Pro headset. Pouring nearly seven years in development, Apple’s Vision Pro’s launch was flagged as the most significant product since the iPhone. The verdict seemed clear. So the rumors of cutting down Vision Pro’s production seem riveting.

Apple is acclimated to blockbuster products and such a deliberate call of pruning the size of the production begs a question: Has Apple lost confidence that the Vision Pro headset will be a success?

Vision Pro: Apple’s First Mixed Reality Headset

Apple has already announced that the spatial computing headset Vision Pro will not go up for sale until early 2024. Now we can concoct a few reasons as to why Apple may have had to scale back the production of Vision Pro. 

The $3,500 price tag traverses beyond Apple’s standard premium pricing and the reason for the mixed reality Vision Pro headset’s lofty cost is because first, it’s a first-generation product. And second, Apple has had to create custom hardware components over the stretch of 7-8 years of research and development. 

Another imperative factor that comes into play is that the complexity of the Vision Pro’s headset design contributes to the difficulties in production.   

Vision Pro

(Image Courtesy – Apple)

Industry analysts have surmised the delay as being more inclined to supply chain problems rather than the speculated Vision Pro SDK program for developers

Sources close to the company have said that Apple was preparing to make fewer than 400,000 Vision Pro units in 2024, solely through its ties with Chinese manufacturer Luxshare. But Apple has reportedly only ordered certain components to fulfill the production of 130,000 – 150,000 units. This implies that Apple has significantly cut production of Vision Pro, slimming down the internal sales target of 1 million units. 

Apple Wants Vision Pro To Appeal To Mass Audiences

Following years of missed deadlines and launch delays, apparently Apple is unhappy with the production yield of defect-free micro-OLEDs. Computing a major factor in seamless displays (and the most expensive component), the micro-OLEDs are vital to Vision Pro headsets. 

The expected $3,500 price point is also indicative of Apple’s low manufacturing yields with a higher cost of production inefficiencies. 

Meanwhile, Sony is reluctant to amp up its mixed-reality headset production without tiptoeing around how the AR and VR headset market would expand. 

Furthermore, to appeal to mass-market consumers, it has been suggested that Apple has partnered with Korean display makers Samsung and LG for its second-generation headset – a more affordable one. Apple has been insistent to incorporate micro-OLEDs only for the non-Pro headset, but may have to compromise with mini-LED exploration, in order to lower the cost of production. But this production of the affordable version of the Apple Vision Pro headset device may also be pushed back.

“Given the limited production numbers, the Vision Pro headset will be flying off the shelves by being pre-ordered by Apple’s high net worth users in the US and its loyal fans.” 

Many analysts believe that Apple will defy all odds to exceed an audience base of 20 million within five years of Vision Pro’s launch, owing to its ecosystem of loyal users.