Apple’s Vision Pro Ignites Worldwide Interest as Sales Inch Up

Apple has reportedly sold about 200,000 Vision Pro units since its U.S. release February 2, the day before the tech giant’s quarterly earnings showed net sales increased by 2 percent to $119.58 billion for the three months that ended December 31. It was the company’s first quarterly revenue increase in a year, driving $33.92 billion in profit for the period, a 13 percent uptick year-over-year. Apple has yet to release official numbers for the Vision Pro, which it describes as “a revolutionary spatial computer that seamlessly blends digital content with the physical world.” Based on early estimates, sales of the $3,500 device are likely to be too small to significantly impact the next quarter.

But the sophisticated headset seems to have added to Cupertino’s corporate cachet. Bloomberg reporting on Yahoo Finance says that overseas, the Vision Pro is commanding steep premiums on the resale market. “On Japan’s Mercari marketplace, the base 256GB model sold for ¥800,000 ($5,400), sellers on China’s Taobao are asking 36,000 yuan ($5,000) and there’s one seller on Singapore’s Lazada seeking S$8,500 ($6,300) for the device.”

The New York Times reports Apple “sold out of its first batch of about 200,000 headsets, according to analysts’ estimates.” That translates to about $700 million in sales, “a relatively small amount for Apple,” writes The Street, which says “the product is intriguing” and could yet burnish Apple’s bottom line in indirect ways, creating the opportunity for related products and services.”

Disney CEO Bob Iger — who joined Apple CEO Tim Cook onstage at the June 2023 WWDC at which the headset was unveiled — just announced Disney is going all-in on virtual worlds via a strategic alliance with “Fortnite” creator Epic Games. That relationship is likely to benefit the Vision Pro (despite Apple and Epic being embroiled in litigation).

Of the quarterly earnings, NYT writes “the results showed that Apple had the ability to overcome a slowdown in device sales by getting its enormous customer base to buy more apps and services, such as Apple Music,” with sales of software and services rising 11 percent to $23.12 billion for the period, “an all-time revenue record in Services,” Cook said in an earnings release.

“Q1 2024 is the first quarter to fully include sales for the iPhone 15 line, Apple Watch Series 9, Apple Watch Ultra 2, and USB-C AirPods Pro 2,” reports 9to5Mac, and Cook announced the company’s “installed base of active devices has now surpassed 2.2 billion, reaching an all-time high across all products and geographic segments.”

However, a forecast decline in iPhone sales that were “$6 billion below Wall Street expectations as its China business took a hit,” according to Reuters, “overshadowed overall fiscal first-quarter sales and profit that beat analysts’ targets.”

“In China, Apple is facing more competitive challenges not only because of Huawei but also because of foldables, which is a very popular and fast-growing segment in China. And as we all know, Apple does not have a foldable device yet,” IDC analyst Nabila Popal told Reuters.

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