Our First Impressions of Apple Vision Pro (We're Totally Here for It)

| Words by Madeline Myers and Nick Walden

Breakthroughs in technology can defy expectations, leaving us with a lasting sense of wonder and enchantment. We’ve experienced this before – with Apple Watch, AirPods Max, and various other Apple products – but Apple Vision Pro has gone above and beyond the rest to transcend the boundaries of conventional reality. We spent our rainy Southern California weekend playing with Vision Pro, and here’s what we think so far. 

Straight out of the box, Apple Vision Pro looks and feels incredible – it’s a truly beautiful piece of technology. Its matte aluminum frame and plush Solo Knit Band are a natural extension of the design language we’ve come to expect of Apple. We did note that it was pretty heavy in hand, and that most of its weight was skewed to the front, leaving us to wonder just how comfortable the headset would feel on hour six of playtime.

Setting up Apple Vision Pro is as simple as it gets. The only manual adjustments required were for the bands. After adjusting the lenses to our eyes using the device’s Digital Crown, a straightforward eye tracking setup guided us through the rest of the process. 

For content consumption, Vision Pro is a total revelation. The ability to watch videos on a gigantic virtual display transported us to previously unexplored realms, merging the virtual and physical in unprecedented ways. The spatial audio is crisp and clear and lives up to the hype.

Plus, its real-time video passthrough is really good. All your apps stay exactly where you leave them, and feel as though they are floating in your real-life environment. That said, the passthrough quality became slightly grainy in dimmer indoor conditions and we noticed some slight motion blur with head movement.

Apple Vision Pro’s ability to bring objects to life is unparalleled. We were especially amazed by Encounter Dinosaurs, an interactive app that lets you come face-to-face with dinosaurs. When we reached out to touch them, they responded differently based on how we interacted with them. And when we moved around the room, their eyes closely followed us. We were totally immersed – excited, scared, absolutely hooked.

Apple Vision Pro’s field of view is capped at about 90 degrees, compared to Quest 3’s 110 degrees. This means there were black borders around what we were looking at. This wasn’t a huge takeaway for us, but being able to sense the bounds of the headset pulled us back into reality and prevented a truly immersive experience.

An especially exciting feature of Apple Vision Pro is its hand and eye tracking. It took us a while to get used to the pinching and dragging but once we did, the user experience was remarkable. To shift your gaze to the left and have the screen come into focus there was nothing short of magic. That said, on two occasions, we did notice the device fail to register our fingers taps.  

For professional endeavors, Vision Pro still has some way to go. Its utility in work-related tasks is hampered by the absence of direct input, making it cumbersome, or perhaps just unfamiliar, compared to traditional devices like monitors. 

In his Monday morning meetings, Creative Director Nick Walden had a chance to put Vision Pro to the test. On occasion, an app would randomly crash and only begin working again after a full reset of the device. He also noted that the audio dropped several times on a single 45-minute Zoom call (though this could be more of a Zoom issue than a Vision Pro issue). 

We also noted some shortcomings when it came to the device’s display. While Apple Vision Pro beats out other headsets when it comes to display quality, it has a harder time when stacked up against 4k monitors and computer screens. Apple Vision Pro’s resolution will need to be even higher to be able to have the same working resolution. 

Despite its current limitations, the future of Vision Pro is bright. Like the first-generation Apple Watch, which evolved from a novelty to an indispensable accessory, Vision Pro holds the potential to redefine how we interact with our technology and the world around us. 

At its current price point of $3,499 USD, Vision Pro may not justify the investment for all users. However, as advancements continue and costs decrease, it's not hard to envision a future where Vision Pro becomes a staple in households worldwide, enriching lives and broadening horizons in ways we've only begun to imagine.

Did you have a chance to try out Apple Vision Pro over the weekend? We’d love to hear your first impressions! Get in touch at support@nomadgoods.com