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November 29, 2023

Apple’s AR goggles are coming to change sports if anyone can afford them

Apple’s AR goggles are coming to change sports if anyone can afford them

Apple announced it’s entering the VR space with “Apple Vision Pro,” which was unveiled at WWDC on Monday. Little is known about how the headset will work in practice, outside of being the crispest, highest-fidelity set of goggles on the market.

Naturally Apple aren’t the first to market. True modern VR has been available for years. However, when Apple is involved it tends to be a pretty big deal — because the company has a knack for taking an existing product, honing it as close to perfection as they can, and releasing the best possible consumer product as a result.

They also put out items that are expensive as hell — and that’s no different here, as Apple Vision Pro will be a mind-boggling $3,499 at launch in early 2024. That’s many magnitudes higher than their competitors, but offers a lot that other headsets don’t.

So, what about sports? What is the rub here? Well, we got two interesting examples of what could happen with Apple Vision Pro.

The ways in which the future of sports is about to get an upgrade. From an F1 perspective, imagine how many fans could really experience races from their living room.

Disney CEO, Bob Iger explains how Apple’s Vision Pro can complement the Disney experience. #WWDC23 pic.twitter.com/ttml3PCpe6

— Toni Cowan-Brown (@ToniCowanBrown) June 5, 2023

It’s important to note that apple is showing these primarily as AR (augmented reality) goggles, with the capability of doing true VR. So, with the example above — imagine if you’re able to watch the game on your TV like normal, with a full-court view playing on your goggles?

Imagine how this could apply to the NFL with All-22 video, or to F1 with helmet cams. There’s been a lot of discussion of making sporting events truly VR friendly, but less has been discussed about turning the viewing experience into a form of second-screen experience, but all through the same lens.

The tech is really interesting and captures the imagination, but it remains to be seen is whether people will adopt. At a price of $3,499 it’s a mammoth investment, and god help you if there’s a family where multiple people will want them. Also, despite numerous attempts, VR hasn’t seen widespread adoption.

Unless there’s a big market for it, there’s little reason that sporting leagues would get onboard and create content for Apple Vision Pro — it just doesn’t make sense to them.

So, will we eventually reach a point where the tech is affordable enough for everyone to dive in, or will these be useless like The Simpsons predicted?

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