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Apple Vision Pro has finally arrived

Apple Vision Pro at Rockaway, NJ Apple Store

Apple's long-rumored AR headset, the Apple Vision Pro, is now available to buy in Apple Stores — at least while stocks last.

There have been rumors of an Apple virtual reality for more than a decade, but 8 years, 11 months and 13 days ago, Apple was granted a patent for one. It was terrible: the patent expected you to wear a plastic bandana and slip your iPhone into it, with the screen facing you.

No wonder a month later in March 2015, Piper Jaffrey claimed that Apple had an experimental small team that had been tasked with doing headsets with style.

Interior of Apple Retail store in Rockaway, NJ with two Apple Vision Pro headsets on a wood table
Apple Vision Pro retail setup at Rockaway Apple Store

It was a long road from there to around 2018 or 2019, when Tim Cook says he first tried on what would ultimately become the Apple Vision Pro.

No wonder he was excited the night before Apple Vision Pro released.

After all those years, all that work, and so much secrecy that literally hundreds of patents were filed so carefully that nobody noticed them, Apple has done it.

As of Friday, February 2, 2024, the finished Apple Vision Pro is arriving in the hands of people who pre-ordered, and it is going on display in Apple Stores across America. AppleInsider's Wes Hilliard will be reporting from Apple Downtown Nashville where he's picking up his 1TB Apple Vision Pro.

Apple Vision Pro and the battery pack
Apple Vision Pro and the battery pack

Wes is one of many AppleInsider writers who will have their own Apple Vision Pro on February 2, so expect detailed coverage of the headset's different options. Also the different experiences as our writers look to see how — or whether — Apple Vision Pro will make a difference to their work and play.

This is a whole new product category for Apple, the first since the Apple Watch back in 2015, and we're all just at the start of it. That decade or so of secret research within Apple is one thing, but now it's out in the real world, we're going to see and learn so much more.

Not least because there's an argument that actually it's far from finished.

Even so, February 2, 2024, is a milestone in what's been a very long product gestation. Back in 2014, Apple was under sufficient criticism about how it wasn't releasing new devices, that Tim Cook made a rare comment about it.

"There will be new categories," Cook said. "We're not ready to talk about it, but we're working on some really great stuff."

Apple Vision Pro is available now, starting at $3,499. Pre-orders sold out within minutes, though, and Apple was believed to have only made a few units, compared to a typical iPhone, iPad, or Mac launch.