Centaurs have two ribcages

07 Jun 2023

Thoughts on Apples viewfinder

WWDC recently happened, and overall it was mostly boring. They announced widgets four separate times, a Snoopy watchface for the Apple Watch, and you can now set multiple alarms for Iphone. Neat.

Then the “One More Thing” happened, as it always does. This “One More Thing” was Apple’s revolutionary VisionPro. The VisionPro is an AR device that is meant to be the next step in computing. The tech behind it is neat…the M2 and R1 chip inside pack some serious firepower, and it can fade in and out depending on if someone is trying to talk to you. Cool stuff! It came with a price tag though…3500 big ones.

Now, I have a hot take…if you look at it from a purely technological standpoint, it is totally worth the price. M2 chips are expensive. There also is not an AR device with the same level of functionality as the VisionPro. However, do I recommend getting it? Absolutely not. There are a few reasons for this.

1. Privacy_reasons.

Remember years ago when Google Glass came out and everyone freaked out about the possible privacy violations involved with owning one? How it makes visual surveillance a guaranteed factor, even in the privacy of your own home? That is literally this, but for Apple. With this pair of goggles, Apple can see everything you see, and archive it. Someone want to share something private with you? Make sure that your goggles are off.

2. It_is_more_distraction

Imagine a world where instead of just living in the moment, you decide that you want to look at reality through your cell phone camera exclusively. Birthday parties, playing with your kids, vacations, etc. You never saw any of it IRL, but you saw it on your screen when you hit the record button.

That is what VisionPro is. Two screens strapped to your eyeballs that are meant to record what you do and provide AR functionality. Imagine your most treasured memories with your parents when you were little…then reimagine them with a pair of big ugly goggles on their face. That is what Apple portrayed as a big selling point of the product.

Imagine a world in which your kids no longer look into your eyes, because they are not visible. That loving look a dad might give when his son rides a bike for the first time? Gone because he was recording it with VisionPro. Parents should set aside the toys, set aside the gadgets, and enjoy life with their kids. Live in the moment.

3. The_battery_life

Let’s say none of this bothers you. You still want to wear them all the time and replace your computer with this thing. Guess what? You cannot. The battery life only lasts two hours. This is a severe limitation, even if you are on board with the idea. It will get better over time, but for now it is laughably short.

4. The_price

“Wait, didn’t you say that technologically it was worth the price?” Yes, I did. However, 3500 is still a LOT of money. I could get a car with that. I cannot see this taking off for a few years at least. During this adoption period app support is going to be limited, and therefore usability will be limited. It is a vicious cycle. If somehow you still think that owning one is a good idea, you might have to wait a few years, if at all, before companies and hobbyists really start to make things for it.


Overall, I think that while it is a neat idea, I think the sociological concerns are too big for me to want one. Life should not be viewed through screens. That is not a concern right now with how short the battery life is, but the battery WILL get better. Apple is betting on AR big time, and I think that they will eventually get it right for mass adoption. However, I think that viewing reality through screens is a bad idea. Call me a myopic technophobe, luddite, or whatever, but I think that it is just a darn sad product.

"Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~1 Thessalonians 5:23"