The future of Apple's Vision Pro is still blurry

Apple's prescription lens plans are reportedly changing, but don't sound any better

Apple Vision Pro
(Image credit: Apple)

Vision Pro, Apple's impressive and expensive mixed reality headset, has a big flaw if you wear glasses: in order to make it as thin as possible, Apple decided not to accommodate your specs. Instead, Apple decided to offer magnetic prescription lenses that attach to the headset – for an additional cost, of course. 

There's no doubt that accommodating glasses wearers requires the headset to be bigger: I have a PSVR 2 and a Meta Quest and they're both pretty bulky. But that's okay, because I'd rather have screens I can see than a headset I can't use at all.

Apple's add-on lenses are not the most elegant solution and as I've written before, it's highly unlikely that Apple will support as many different prescriptions as your local Specsavers. And according to Bloomberg's well connected Mark Gurman, "the process of offering thousands of different combinations has proven to be a headache for Apple's operations team". So Apple has come up with another solution: factory-fitted prescription lenses.

This is a terrible idea.

Apple's lens plans seem short-sighted

The first and most obvious reason that this is a terrible idea is because if you build prescription lenses into a headset you limit who can wear it, and you massively reduce its resale value: instead of a headset you can share with others and sell on when Apple brings out the next one, you've got a headset that only you can see through and that most potential buyers won't want. 

And there's another issue. As every glasses wearer knows, prescriptions change over time.

I really hope that either Apple thought about this and decided not to do it, or that someone in Apple is just messing with Gurman and telling him tall tales. Because at the moment it does look like Apple's vision for Vision Pro is going to exclude an awful lot of people – not just now, while the device is very much for early adopters and developers with deep pockets, but also when more affordable versions become available. If Vision Pro really is a vision of computing's future, it'd be nice if more of us could see it.

Carrie Marshall

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written more than a dozen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote seven more books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (