Vision pro is here, but now we eagerly anticipate the evolution of Apple's immersive technology. The Vision Pro (AVP) stands poised to revolutionise not only how we see the digital world but also how we engage with others. But what about fitness I hear you ask, I mean, it's the second largest demographic of users on the Quest ecosystem right?
Let's delve into the futuristic landscape where fitness meets augmented reality, exploring the potential, challenges, and exciting innovations that may lie ahead.
First off a little disclaimer, I live in the UK, and so have not yet tried the AVP, but I of course intend to buy one for myself and my team when they arrive here soon, so rather than hop on a flight to New York and generate 590kgs of C02, Xcode Simulator and Unity will suffice.
Navigating the Weight of Progress
The weight of a headset has long been a consideration in the evolution of VR headsets. With the AVP, strides in design aim to make the headset as lightweight as possible, ensuring comfort during prolonged use. The top strap, a vital component of this comfort equation, becomes a lifeline, distributing the weight evenly to prevent strain and enhance the overall fitness experience. As with all headset designs, it not so much the weight, but the distribution of said weight which I go into more detail here.
Tethered, Yet Unleashed
The tethered battery pack introduces a practical challenge to the AVP – a consideration for those seeking unrestricted mobility during workouts. Yet, as the technology progresses, I can anticipate innovative solutions that balance power and portability, ensuring that the AVP becomes an unobtrusive companion in the pursuit of fitness goals. I would also expect that third parties such as BoBoVR will build a strap to house the battery in the rear of the original type Apple style headband whilst at the same time shortening the power cord. This should mean a better overall balance, in theory.
Your Personal Trainer in Tack Sharp Precision
One of the most exciting prospects of the Apple Vision Pro is the integration of augmented reality avatars as fitness trainers. One thing that really peaked my interest in the VR fitness space was the Samsung keynote speech from a few years back, where they had an avatar trainer that was on stage with the speaker.
From the discussions I have had with these first adopters of AVP, the foveated rendering ensures razor-sharp images, perfect for avatars trainers that will guide users through workouts with great clarity.
Imagine having a virtual trainer right in front of you, demonstrating exercises with precision, providing real-time feedback, and tailoring workouts to individual needs.
Will this spell the end of physical gyms do you think?
Stealthy Workouts with Gorilla Tag and Beyond
What about stealth fitness gaming, where the AVP has the potential to transcend traditional workout routines. Games like Gorilla Tag, immensely popular among teens, can metamorphose into stealth fitness experiences.
Engaging gameplay seamlessly intertwined with physical activity turns workouts into immersive adventures, making exercise feel like play – a potential game-changer in the world of fitness.
And what about Apple Fitness+, I have to say I am truly shocked they didn't create something around fitness at launch, even though Apples narrative is productivity and watching movies, I still think this was a big own goal.
As we step into the future of fitness with the Apple Vision Pro, comfort, mobility, and innovation will have to take centre stage. I expect future designs to be of course smaller lighter versions with more of an emphasis on overall usability, so much talk of "this is a dev headset", but I wonder what the percentage of devs over Apple fan boys and girls bought this first iteration. We are so far off glasses at this point as the same old problems are still there, you cant bend physics.
The ergonomics of future straps and weight distribution of the tethered battery pack prompts us to envision a world where power and freedom could coexist harmoniously. Augmented reality avatars redefine personal training, and gaming becomes a gateway to stealth fitness, transforming the way we approach well-being.
The Apple Vision Pro emerges not just as a device, but as a catalyst for a potential new era in fitness, but what is obvious, is that with all of Apple's great design teams, we still need the third party accessory manufacturers to come to the rescue and to solve a few of the teething problems...