It's not often we feel sympathetic for one of the biggest companies in the world, but spare a thought for Apple. To say that there are high expectations for its upcoming mixed-reality headset would be a massive understatement. It doesn't help that we're just a matter of weeks away from the official release date of a product that has been described by Apple as "the most advanced personal electronics device ever" no pressure.
As Apple attempts to bring something normally seen as for enthusiasts only (VR/AR headsets) into the mainstream, and with a $3499 price tag to boot, you can't blame them for starting with smaller numbers. Especially when you consider the likes of Google Glass never caught on and the high manufacturing costs involved.
For those who are unsure if the Vision Pro is for them, and given the price tag, the in-store experience and demonstrations is going to be massive. There have been reports that Apple will in fact only sell the headset in-store because of the time required to fit and demonstrate the device to customers. You could struggle to find one initially. According to renowned tipster Min Chi Kuo Apple will only produce between 60,000 to 80,000 for the second of February, which given the excitement will probably sell out pretty quickly even with the high price.
Given how new and complicated the Vision Pro is, there is bound to be some element of refinement and teething troubles. I'm sure Apple has done oodles of beta testing but going into a full release is a big step.
You can only launch a new product once, so it has to go well to begin with. Having said that, it's hard to have another 'iPhone moment' if people can't go out and buy one. I expect we may quickly be in a situation similar to the launch of the PS5 where they become like gold dust (or you could even get a gold headset).