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I called Zeiss about the Apple Vision Pro.

If Apple won't tell me, I have to call in a life line.

After last evening’s1 Apple Keynote and the associated $3499 sticker shock, there was one thing I really needed to know: how much would optical lenses for those of us with glasses be?

So I called Zeiss.

I am in a somewhat privileged position in this regard. Zeiss manufactures a set of tools used in in-vivo pathology, an up and coming way to diagnose cellular level pathologies in living, breathing, hoping-to-be-cured patients. Which means I have a number to call and a person who is very much interested in and dependant on our order of more of those tools in the fall.

She promised, she’d find out about those lenses, which are exclusively manufactured by Zeiss. An odd choice, considering Zeiss is mostly leaving this part of its below-$10k lens business to concentrate on medical and expensive cinematography solutions.

An hour later, I had a call back from someone else whose name I neither remember nor would divulge here. She told me that, no, there weren’t any firm prices associated with their lenses for the AVP, and, yes, it wouldn’t be cheap.

The way she was told this would work is as follows:

  • On purchase of an AVP you are being sent a PDF with measurement details Zeiss needs.
  • You visit an optician or optometrist with specific equipment to measure your retina.
  • This result (cost around $100) will then be sent to Zeiss
  • Your lenses are made and sent to you

No firm prices, as stated, but “lower four digits, probably” was the answer when I brought up my specific needs of axis and focus corrections.

This might raise the price of an Apple Vision Pro to somewhere in the 5k range. Considering, no one has found any indication of profile management in the available Frameworks, meaning “one AVP one user” seems to be the case as it is with iOS and iPadOS, this is a bit of a price bummer. Shelling out a quick 10k to get you and your partner having sweet cyber romance while out on the oil rig for three months doesn’t quite have the ring of probability to it, Apple might hope it does.

And even with profiles, if we all have to start carrying $2000 Zeiss Magnet Lenses just so we can peruse a friends’ AVP at their place, the device will be a non-starter. I don’t honestly think, Apple wants this to be the next “iRevolution” a la iPhone. With coverage mainly centered on single Silicon Valley and New York Hispters, hoping to consume better porn, few developers will invest the time and effort to port and adapt their apps. Maybe WWDC 2025 will get us something a little more consumer friendly. Unless Apple will MacPro that thing as well.

  1. I am in Cyprus right now

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