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In a surprising turn of events, Apple has reportedly slashed its initial targets for Apple Vision Pro unit shipments, as revealed by the Financial Times this morning. Previously expected to roll out a million units per year, the tech giant is now aiming for a considerably lower number, with approximately 400,000 Vision Pro headsets planned for production in 2024.
The main reason behind this sudden setback stems from the intricate design of the Vision Pro headset, a technologically advanced device that aims to redefine the user’s digital experience. Apple’s ambitious plans to create a more affordable second-generation headset have also been delayed, exacerbating the situation further.
At the heart of the production challenges lies the inclusion of the groundbreaking EyeSight feature, which projects the user’s eyes on an outward-facing display, enhancing immersion and interaction. Assembling the passthrough cameras below the EyeSight display has proven to be one of the most intricate bottlenecks in the entire production process. The cameras necessitate meticulous calibration to account for variations in the curved cover glass, adding an additional layer of complexity to the manufacturing process.
Furthermore, Apple’s commitment to delivering an unparalleled visual experience has led to the incorporation of 4K micro-OLED displays, one for each eye. However, the yields for these high-quality displays have remained disappointingly low, creating further obstacles in the production chain.
To handle the assembly of the Vision Pro headset, Apple has partnered with Chinese manufacturer Luxshare, known for its collaboration on various other successful products, including AirPods and select MacBook models. However, the news of lower Vision Pro device shipments had an immediate impact on Luxshare’s stock, sending it on a downward trajectory.
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A second generation of Apple’s headset production was previously slated for a 2025 release, featuring both high-end and lower-end models. But today’s report indicates that the entire product roadmap timeline has been significantly pushed back, with no certainty about the revised launch date.
Luxshare, in anticipation of the tremendous demand for the Vision Pro headset, had been ramping up its production capacity, preparing to offer assembly for approximately 18 million headsets in the coming years. Unfortunately, the current situation throws uncertainty into the mix, leaving the manufacturer in a precarious position.
As eager consumers anticipate the first-generation Vision Pro hitting the market early next year, Apple has announced that it will initially be available exclusively in the United States. However, the tech giant plans to expand its availability to more countries by the end of 2024.