What it's like to use Apple's new Vision Pro VR headset


You have to be a real tech geek to love Apple's Vision Pro.

For starters, you can rarely move your head when using a VR headset or you have to start over.

And your eyes and hands do almost all the work.

I was among a few hundred people who lined up before sunrise on Friday outside Apple's flagship New York City store on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan for the launch of the company's $3,500 futuristic gadget.

Once inside the crowded showroom, I signed up for a Vision Pro demo — open only to people aged 13 and over — which required filling out a detailed questionnaire about my eyesight, since glasses can't be worn with headphones.

People who wear glasses must have their prescription measured using a special device manufactured by a third party and then use the optical inputs on the headset to adjust the visuals.

When I finally put on the VR headset, I had to go through facial recognition, hand recognition, and connect a series of dots by looking at them and tapping my thumb and index finger together three times before I was allowed into the system.

From now on, everything was done with my eyes and fingers.

New York Post reporter Georgette Roberts got the chance to use Apple's new Vision Pro virtual reality headset. Robert Miller
The headphone weighs 20 ounces and feels somewhat heavy when strapped to your face. Robert Miller

If I wanted to go to the menu, all I had to do was look at the icon, tap my index and thumb together and it opened.

The same goes for photo folders.

If I pinched my fingers together, I was able to move or resize the image in front of me.

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My every move was captured by the device's dozens of cameras and five sensors.

Most of the time, I had to keep my head straight and just move my eyes or else the headset would have to be readjusted, which took up to a few minutes.

The device is controlled by eye movements and finger taps that are used to open applications. Robert Miller
The Vision Pro is equipped with dozens of cameras, five sensors and six microphones – and has a price tag of $3,500. Robert Miller

Then there's the price: The Vision Pro costs a staggering $3,500, which is the equivalent of about five weeks' wages for someone earning minimum wage in New York City.

And then there's the weight: At 20 ounces, the headset is relatively heavy, and the longer I use it, sitting still with the gadget strapped to my face, the more bulky it feels.

But one of the few times I was able to move, I was in panoramic view mode, which allows for more freedom.

As part of the demo, Alicia Keys' performance was shown in panoramic view, which looked remarkably realistic up close.

Hundreds of people lined up outside Apple's flagship store in Manhattan before dawn Friday to get their hands on a new virtual reality device to test or buy. Robert Miller

I was able to watch her sing to one side and then turn my head and see her backup artists.

The sound was just as impressive as the visuals, giving me the feeling of attending an in-person concert.

Other immersive clips shown during the demo included men playing soccer, a surfer riding a wave, and birthday candles being blown out on a cake.

At one point, I jumped back into my chair when it seemed like the rhinoceros was lunging directly at me!

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