Did Apple "Steal" the Vision Pro?

Someone else has the rights. For now.

Good morning! ☀️ *Tim Cook voice*

Apple wasn’t first with the Vision Pro, iOS 17 killed several apps, the Reddit drama just got worse, and more.

Estimated reading time: 4.3 minutes

📊 Poll

Last week, I asked if you installed the iOS 17 Beta..

Here were some of my favorite replies:

No - “The dev betas are simply just too unstable. I’m probably gonna wait till the public beta next month.” Smart, this is what I advise for most.

Yes - “Even though I shouldn’t, because I have only one device. I just love testing the beta software. Doing so lets me know what to tell my family about the new updates, and get familiar with the software so I am able to help people when they need it without having to learn along the way. I’m the go to for tech anything for my family and many friends, so it’s good to keep up.” I think everyone reading this is the go-to tech support for family/friends 🤣

No - “I have an iPhone 8, so I’m stuck on 16.5 for the time being. Hopefully they’ll make it compatible soon!” I wish that’s how it worked. iPhone 8 is dead now

This week: When did you purchase your current Mac?

Last time you bought a Mac?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

🥽 Apple’s Cheaper Headset

Two Apple Vision Pro sections in a row. Bear with me, it’s still hot & new.

Apple shocked us all when they announced that their Vision Pro headset would cost $3500 - a $500+ increase from what the rumors said.

But, given the name “Pro” and the fact that it’s a 1st gen product, we knew a cheaper one was going to come next.

But how could Apple lower the price of this headset? Well, here’s what we’re hearing (via Gurman):

  • Apple could replace the twin 4K microLED displays and M2 chips with cheaper alternative components, and use fewer cameras

  • A simpler headband design with no integrated speakers, requiring users to wear AirPods for spatial audio instead

  • Achieving cheaper material costs in other areas, combined with a more streamlined production process, could allow Apple to reduce the price of the headset by several hundred dollars

The important thing to note here, is that Gurman believes Apple will not get rid of the EyeSight feature. Imo, this feature is a must to separate from the competition, but at the same time, this is what will always keep the price relatively high.

When can we expect this cheaper, 2nd gen version of the headset? According to Ming Chi Kuo: 2025.

How cheap would this 2nd gen headset have to be for you to consider buying one? Vote below!

How much would you pay for a "cheaper" headset?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

🤫 Did Apple Steal “Vision Pro?”

Apple’s long-awaited headset was a name that surprisingly wasn’t leaked. But the problem they’re now facing is that they weren’t the first to trademark the name Vision Pro.

  • Huawei successfully registered the Vision Pro trademark in 2019

  • The trademark’s exclusive rights period is from 2021 - 2031, with approved usage for LCD TVs, head-mounted virtual reality devices & more

  • This means that Apple might not be able to use the name “Vision Pro” for the headset in China and may have to rebrand when launching in that country

So, this is interesting. And there are really only 3 solutions for Apple in this situation:

  1. Rebrand the headset

  2. Don’t sell the headset in China

  3. Make a deal with Huawei

My thoughts:

  1. Even just a slight variation to the name will do… but this isn’t something Apple has ever done. Unlikely.

  2. This is highly unlikely as China is a major market, so I see this as a 0.1% chance.

  3. I believe this is the path Apple will take. They basically have unlimited cash, so they’ll just pay off Huawei to use their trademark and this will be a non-issue.

It’s not like China won’t have a 1:1 ripoff of the Vision Pro within days of Apple’s official launch anyways.

So, yes, it’s likely Apple knew of this trademark before naming their headset.. but it was never an issue in their eyes because it was only trademarked in one country + they know they can just reach an agreement to use the name.

What you think of the Vision Pro

These are some of the comments left in last week’s poll.

“The Vision Pro is definitely the future; I can see this becoming something that you wear immediately after you change into your pajamas at home and keep it on for the rest of the night, or after sitting behind your desk at work and keeping it until the day is over.”

“The first vr headset to come out was the future at that time. All the Apple headset has done is combine a lot of really amazing aspects of other headsets and added a couple “apple touches” like they always do. Apple never ships a half baked product or something that already exists. They make something new. Not necessarily the future, but definitely new and more than likely better.”

“The main use for the Oculus for me is gaming and fitness apps. Both don’t seem to be a priority for the Vision Pro. Everything currently that can be done on the vision PRO can be done on an iPad or iPhone. Till a use appears that cannot be fulfilled by any other apple product, the vision pro will be a luxury nice to have item”

“Even with the incredible leaps Apple's version has made in the AR/VR technology, I still don't see this becoming mainstream – at least not the way I could envision generative AIs becoming a part of our future.

Although it does seem to have potential for specific applications, like certain commercial applications, especially where spatial visualization can add value (architecture, medical, engineering) or specialized entertainment (theme parks, interactive movies, sports, gaming, etc.).

I am also excited about the technological innovations the development of Vision Pro has probably ensued. 5000+ patents must have some application across other devices in Apple's kitty – or perhaps lead the way for the development of another health-focused wearable?”

☠️ Apple Sherlocked These Apps

When Apple is in charge, no iOS developer is safe. And iOS 17 proves this yet again…

Sherlocked - to have developed a product and just started shipping it, only to have Apple come along and provide exactly the same functionality in a system update.

Urban Dictionary

Here are the apps Apple got “inspiration” from:

NameDrop

Perhaps my favorite iOS 17 feature, NameDrop, allows you to exchange contact info with someone via AirDrop with a simple tap of the 2 phones. But it’s no revolutionary idea.

An app named Bump was released in 2009 and sold to Google.

Its sole function? The same thing. To easily let you exchange information between devices with a “bump.”

Widgets

iOS 17 adds the Shortcuts widget to the lockscreen, meaning you can launch apps from the LS. This will eliminate a ton of apps that capitalized on the lack of this in iOS 16.

The main sherlocked app that comes to mind is Lock Launcher.

Also, with macOS Sonoma adding widgets to the desktop, apps like Widgetsmith, Wdgts 2, Widgetwall will suffer.

Presenter overlay in action

Presenter overlay

This one reminded me of TikTok more than anything, but this new conference call-focused feature allows you to be green screened onto the screen you’re sharing, so that attendees don’t have to look at 2 separate inputs.

Two of the apps that have done this for a while: mmhmm (started by the founder of Evernote) and Loom.

Both apps do the same thing, but I will say that both have additional, more advanced presentation features. So they will likely still exist and thrive.

Journal App

Apple’s rumored on-device Journal app arrives with iOS 17 and it allows users to journal their daily lives and since it’s tied into the ecosystem, it will be able to give personalized suggestions.

There are too many journaling apps to count, but the main one that comes to mind is Day One. This app will certainly see a decline in user-base, especially given that the app doesn’t tie in to your location, photos, music and Health data.

Mood Tracking

Similar to the journaling app, mood tracking was another successful category for 3rd party applications - until now.

Apple integrates this into the Health app with iOS 17 and watchOS 10 and this is actually something I’ve been using (and loving).

The sherlocked apps? Daylio and Moodnote.

🌑 Reddit Gone Dark

It all started with Reddit trying to charge the developer of Apollo $20M to use their API to run his business (a 3rd party Reddit client).

We covered this a couple weeks ago and now, more than 9,000 subreddits, including some of the most-subscribed communities on Reddit have set their subreddit to “private” to protest Reddit’s egregious API pricing changes.

This was only supposed to last 48 hours but now, thanks to the CEO’s reaction, this blackout will continue even longer than planned.

His argument is that the Reddit API – which has been used by 3rd-party apps for several years – was “never designed to support third-party apps.”

And just when you thought things couldn’t get worse, it somehow did.

Now, Reddit is threatening to remove moderators for continuing the blackout protest.

Let’s not forget, these mods are putting in hours of work per week and are not getting paid a dime. Yes it’s by choice, but still, borderline threatening them does not seem like the move.

Huffman, the CEO of Reddit, has also mentioned that these blackouts have made no change to Reddit's API pricing plan.

“That's our business decision, and we're not undoing that business decision.”

Well, uh, I think this is about as tone deaf as it gets for a CEO. I understand the business side of it, but you also have to listen to the community, that’s literally what Reddit is all about. To be continued..

🎨 Set Wallpaper

Click the image to download the full res file.

🫶 Reader Love

Appreciate that! Those are the exact elements I hypothesized before starting this.

Much love guys, the feedback means a lot!

Until next week, ✌️

PS: I’m not making a dime from this newsletter, so if you would like to support directly, you can do so here!

What did you think of today's newsletter?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

Join the conversation

or to participate.