Uncomfortable reality leads to Vision Pro returns

1 Uncomfortable reality leads to Vision Pro returns

Recent reports indicate a wave of returns for Apple’s Vision Pro headsets with users citing discomfort, headaches and eye strain as primary concerns. 

This uptick in returns aligns with the closing of Apple’s 14-day return window, suggesting initial excitement for the $3,500 device may be waning.

The clunky design of the headset has been a critical factor for users. The front-heavy weight distribution has been linked to physical discomfort, with some users experiencing headaches and motion sickness.  

While dry eyes and redness have been associated with VR headsets for years, the severity of these symptoms with the Vision Pro seems noteworthy.

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Woman wearing a Vision Pro headset  (Apple)

Headaches, eye irritation and discomfort

Customers returning the Vision Pro headset to Apple stores are sharing their grievances with the employees. They report that while the device initially promises a magical experience, its cumbersome and unwieldy design overshadows this aspect. 

As a result, many find it uncomfortable to wear even for short periods. That discomfort eventually led to others posting about their experience online in their decision to return it. Additionally, several others share the sentiment of finding the headset too expensive to justify the persistent headaches and eye strain.

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An elusive perfect fit

The ergonomic challenges posed by wearable technologies are not new. With smartwatches, it’s often a matter of case size relative to the wrist; with smart rings, the issue may be finger size or swelling. Smart glasses and headsets, like the Vision Pro, confront similar problems with fit and comfort, particularly for individuals with low nose bridges or those who need a device that adequately blocks out light.

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After the wow factor wears off

Beyond the physical issues, the Vision Pro’s utility has come under scrutiny. Users have reported productivity challenges, stating that the headset does not offer enough functionality to warrant its price. 

Complaints range from difficulties in viewing Figma screens to the inadequacy of the headset for work-related tasks. Programmers have noted the unsatisfactory experience with coding and focus issues leading to headaches. For some, the lack of games and entertainment options further diminishes the device’s value.

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A woman relaxes with a Vision Pro headset.

Dissatisfied now, but willing to buy a second version later

While a vocal group of early adopters is expressing dissatisfaction and intent to return the device, many are still open to the idea of a second-generation Vision Pro. They suggest the technology itself isn’t at fault; rather, it’s the absence of a compelling application and the need for improved comfort.

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Kurt’s key takeaways 

The extent of the return phenomenon remains unclear, as does Apple’s internal expectations for the headset’s performance. However, the feedback from this outspoken minority could influence the future development and refinement of the Vision Pro headset.

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