Apple Drops Production Target on Vision Pro Headsets Following Design and Manufacturing Problems

UTC by Tolu Ajiboye · 3 min read
Apple Drops Production Target on Vision Pro Headsets Following Design and Manufacturing Problems
Photo: Apple Inc

Users waiting for the Vision Pro headset next year may see only around 150,000 available as Apple is reportedly scaling down production.

Apple Inc is cutting down its production forecast for the recently announced Vision Pro mixed-reality headset. The tech giant is forced to reduce its production outlook for the device because of design and manufacturing complexities.

At the launch, Apple said the Vision Pro headset would be available at a $3,499 price tag. Although it did not specify a release date, Apple said the new device would launch early next year. However, the company is now dwindling production plans due to problems faced by manufacturers.

According to a Financial Times report, two people close to Apple and Luxshare (the initial Chinese company contracted for assembling) said Apple would make less than 400,000 Vision Pro headsets next year. In addition, the report states that Apple asked two sole suppliers of specific Vision Pro components for items only enough to make between 130,000 and 150,000 headsets in 2024. These numbers are considerably lower than an earlier reported sales forecast of 1 million units within 12 months of its release.

D/D Advisors founder Jay Goldberg believes that the problems are to be expected. According to him, “a lot of this is normal growing pains. This is the most complex consumer device anyone has ever made.”

Goldberg also added that Apple’s high price tag for the device was deliberate, to accommodate these problems. Goldberg believes that Apple already knew there would be manufacturing problems with the Vision Pro, especially with the kind of technology required for production. According to him, “Apple knows they won’t make money on this in the first year.”

Production Problems for the Vision Pro Headset

The Vision Pro’s micro-OLED displays are one problem with Apple’s production of the headset. The headset features two micro-OLED displays for the wearer and an outward display for others. Reportedly, the displays Apple used during the demonstration announcing the headset were products from chipmaker TSMC and Sony. Nonetheless, Apple is not satisfied with the yield of these displays.

Display yield is the percentage of usable panels produced by a company. Since not all produced panels are usable due to dead pixels or problems with functionality, low yields increase production costs. The display is reportedly the most expensive part of the Vision Pro.

In addition to the yield, Apple faces several other issues with the Vision Pro’s production. Reports suggest that the public demonstration only highlighted some of the device’s best features.

For instance, Apple is not properly done with the in-air typing feature. In addition, interface elements, iPad apps, and third-party apps are not working correctly. Furthermore, the EyeSight feature, which shifts the device between opaque and transparent modes for better communication with others while wearing the device, is not functioning properly.

To solve this problem, Apple is expanding device testing and will involve many more members of staff. Also, reports suggest that Apple will now allow more developers access to the device to meet the release timeline. Previously, only senior engineers and executives had full access and could go home with the device.

Business News, News, Technology News, Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality News
Related Articles