Why I Want Apple’s Rumored Pricey VR Headset

I’m convinced VR is the future

Key Takeaways

  • I’m ready to plunk down $3,000 for Apple’s rumored virtual reality headset even without knowing exactly what it is. 
  • The Oculus Quest 2 has made me realize how life-changing a truly great headset could be. 
  • Collaborating with colleagues over virtual reality could be fun rather than the chore it is on Zoom.
Someone using a VR headset with the upper part of the image dissolving into pixels.
Nastasic / Getty Images

There’s a strange sound coming out of my wallet these days. It’s my credit card whimpering about my growing desire to buy Apple’s rumored $3,000 virtual reality headset

These are odd times for Apple to be going big in VR. Although the headset is only a few hints at this point, the sky-high price tag puts it about 10 times the price of my very nice Oculus Quest 2. Surely, the company must be aware there’s a global recession going on?

Yet, I’m ashamed to admit that the thought of Apple’s headset makes me salivate like a robot dog taunted by electronic biscuits. It’s Facebook’s fault.

I had written off VR as a gimmick when I tried out the Oculus Go. It was fun, but slow and blurry. Now that I have the Oculus Quest 2, I’m hooked with its better screens and a faster processor. It’s not the future, but it’s so close that I can nearly taste it. 

"But what if Apple’s high price tag takes you places that the current crop of consumer-grade headsets never can?"

Apple’s Reality Distortion Field

Can I afford a $3,000 headset? Absolutely not. But I’ve felt the same way about nearly every Apple product that’s hit the market, and somehow I’ve succumbed to the temptation to buy them.

Bluetooth earbuds? A waste of money. A smartwatch that nags you to exercise? Ridiculous. Of course, I’m wearing an Apple Watch and listening to AirPods right now. 

The same thing will happen with Apple’s VR headset, I fear. What seems unattainable and unnecessary somehow becomes a must-have item through Apple’s magical mix of engineering, design, and marketing spin. 

The rumored specs, alone, are enough to make me think that the Apple wizardry may happen again. Powerful processors and high-resolution displays could make all the difference. These are things that are lacking on my Oculus headset.

An artistic photograph of a person using a VR headset.
janiecbros / Getty Images

Oh, I like the Oculus well enough. It’s a great way to kill some time watching movies and occasionally using a fitness game. I even enjoy browsing the web on this gadget. But every interaction with the Oculus leaves me wanting more. 

Great Picture Quality is Everything

What I want is seamless and realistic transportation from the every day into the virtual world. There are just too many lags on the Oculus to entirely escape reality.

The picture quality is much improved from previous versions, but it’s nowhere as good as a decent laptop screen. You have to suspend your disbelief to think that you are transported to some far off destination when you are peering at the pixelated images on the Oculus. 

These shortcomings are made up for by the reasonable price of the Oculus. It’s only $299, after all, a mere few dozen lattes at Starbucks, while Apple may be asking you to cough up the price of a halfway decent used car. 

But what if Apple’s high price tag takes you places that the current crop of consumer-grade headsets never can? Worse, I suspect that an excellent VR headset may become a must-have item. 

"Yet, I’m ashamed to admit that the thought of Apple’s headset makes me salivate like a robot dog taunted by electronic biscuits."

With a truly great VR headset, I could see myself spending a lot more time in virtual reality. It might even be useful.

During the coronavirus pandemic, I’ve been spending a lot more time indoors like many people. Working from home is getting old. Collaborating with colleagues over virtual reality could be memorable and fun rather than the chore it is on Zoom.

The VR headsets that I have used are bulky and clunky. I could easily see the industrial designers at Apple making this problem go away.

Right now, I want to tear my headset off after about half an hour because it digs into my face and makes my head hurt. Perhaps Apple will make a headset that you don’t even notice you are wearing for long periods. 

If Apple can make a comfortable VR headset that brings you places you can’t go otherwise and helps us communicate and collaborate, then $3,000 might not be too high a price to pay. After all, who needs a car when you can travel virtually?

Was this page helpful?