The cheaper Apple Vision Pro could come with these big trade-offs – and make the Meta Quest 3 look a bargain

A woman wearing the Apple Vision Pro headset
(Image credit: Apple)

The Apple Vision Pro is one of the best VR headsets you can buy, but all of that power comes with a significant price tag – and a new report has shed light on how a cheaper Apple Vision might bring that asking price down significantly, if nowhere near as low as the Meta Quest 3.

Writing in his Power On newsletter, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has shared some key ideas that Apple has apparently been considering for its cheaper Vision Pro. That includes using a narrower field of view and lowering the specs of the Vision Pro’s internal displays, as well as reducing the visual fidelity of the passthrough visuals that show the world around you when you use the headset’s augmented reality mode.

Gurman also noted some other, more radical ways Apple is apparently considering bringing the Vision Pro’s price down. One such idea would involve removing the EyeSight feature that shows the headset wearer’s eyes to those around them – something Gurman previously said Apple was considering. That move would certainly be fine by us, as it's arguably one of the Vision Pro's worst features (if a nice idea in theory). 

As well as that, Gurman believes that Apple could require its cheaper headset to be tethered to a Mac or iPhone in order to shift the processing power off the Vision Pro, which could significantly reduce its portability. That would be a radical change, but one that could reframe it as an accessory that gives your Mac multiple virtual displays. 

How much might the Apple Vision cost?

Apple Vision Pro Review

(Image credit: Future)

These measures would all help Apple reduce the cost of the Vision Pro, and Gurman reveals how much cheaper it could be. Apparently, the Apple Vision could cost in the region of $1,500 to $2,000 – far below the $3,499 (around £2,760 / AU$5,250) price of the existing model, but also far higher than the Meta Quest 3 (which starts at $499 / £479 / AU$799).

But that still leaves Apple with a couple of glaring problems. For one thing, the headset would still be deeply unaffordable for a lot of people and would require a significant investment for what would likely still be a very niche product.

As well as that, Gurman points out that you’d be paying for a much less enticing experience. “Even at $1,500,” Gurman states, “the product would cost three times as much as rival devices from Meta Platforms Inc. – without the technological advances that made the Vision Pro superior to the competition.”

This project is now the main focus on Apple’s Vision Products Group, Gurman says, putting it ahead of a second-generation (and more expensive) Vision Pro. But with a planned launch date of late 2025, there’s not a huge amount of time left for Apple to get a cheaper headset right – and get the Vision Pro back on track.

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Alex Blake
Freelance Contributor

Alex Blake has been fooling around with computers since the early 1990s, and since that time he's learned a thing or two about tech. No more than two things, though. That's all his brain can hold. As well as TechRadar, Alex writes for iMore, Digital Trends and Creative Bloq, among others. He was previously commissioning editor at MacFormat magazine. That means he mostly covers the world of Apple and its latest products, but also Windows, computer peripherals, mobile apps, and much more beyond. When not writing, you can find him hiking the English countryside and gaming on his PC.