Vision Quest ๐Ÿ“ง

Happy Vision Pro Launch Day. As discussed previously, I don't actually have one in my hands today as I'm not in the United States. But I will be next week and I'm excited to try to figure out how to lug its coffin massive box back overseas, where everyone's vision remains decidedly non-pro, for now.

Given my posts on the matter, a number of people noted they were surprised at how negative I seemed about the device. But I am honestly excited to try it out. Of course I am! Given everything I've read about it, and my years doing this, I have a pretty good sense of what my reaction will be ahead of time, but there's no substitute for the experience itself, obviously. I'm simply trying to assess what I believe the reaction to and ultimate fate of the device will be. And that, I suspect, will be mixed at best.

Kudos to Apple (and Meta/Oculus before them) for pushing the envelope here. But these devices are not going to truly break out until they can nail the form factor. Apple has not done that yet, clearly. Which is fine! But I also don't believe their attempt to spin the Vision Pro as anything other than a device people will use alone is going to help the industry. They should just be honest about that.

It's the first version of many. Form factors will shrink โ€“ as will prices โ€“ technology will improve, just like it always does. And all of that will happen faster as a result of Apple shipping this now. They should just say all of that more directly, IMO.

But I do think related to the spin above โ€“ or perhaps because of it โ€“ Apple miscalculated with the EyeSight feature. I felt that way six months ago, and all the reviews have seemingly confirmed as much. We all get the intent, but such a feature also undoubtedly adds cost, weight, and hurts battery life. And that key, literal forward-facing element of the Vision Pro is getting panned, which again, isn't helping the cause here.

Anyway, the other interesting beneficiary of the Vision Pro's existence in the market right now is a fun one: Meta. Not only does Wall Street suddenly not care about the company draining โ€“ checks the just-released numbers โ€“ $4.65B(!) for the quarter and over $42B cumulative now into the "metaverse" efforts, the stock is up over 20% today. And 400% in the past 15 months! (Okay, maybe there are other reasons for that.) But the point is that Apple's entry into the market, even though they say they're creating a new market here, has taken immense pressure off of Meta in that one key regard. And it positions them well in the reasonable person market (which is to say, sub-$3,500 price points) for XR devices. Sure, the Vision Pro is leaps and bounds better in many ways, but it's also leaps and bounds less expensive. And most consumers thinking about jumping in are undoubtedly going to want to dip toes in such waters before doing the cannonball.

Sent from London, England


WSJ Found the Two People on Earth Willing to Unsubscribe from Amazon Prime โ€“ Over the move to start showing ads in Prime Video (unless you pay more to remove the ads). I don't like TV commercials. And I don't like the nickle-and-diming. But come on, no one is unsubscribing from Prime over this.

Thanks, I Hate It โ€“ While Apple may be doing Mark Zuckerberg an indirect favor with the Vision Pro launch, Zuckerberg is not exactly returning the favor, as he called Apple's proposed DMA changes "onerous", joining Epic, Spotify, Microsoft, and pretty much everyone else.

The Sports Illustrated Cover, a Faded Canvas That Once Defined Sports โ€“ It is truly wild how much the cover of the magazine used to matter, and how seared in our memories many of those covers are for any of us who are old enough. And now, sadly, poof.

Om's Magic Vision Pro Moments โ€“ Per above, it's really easy to overthink and analyze the Vision Pro right now, especially before using it. Just a few simple things will undoubtedly make it "wow" right out of the box.

Alexa, Clean My House โ€“ In light of Amazon walking away from their deal to buy iRobot (under immense regulatory pressure โ€“ again, to buy a robot vacuum company), it's worth re-reading Brad Stone's post from right after the deal was announced giving some analysis as to why Amazon was doing it. The home robot angle remains compelling, but Amazon will have to find another path forward...

My Missives...

Letโ€™s Face It
Happy Vision Pro Week to those who celebrate. The device ships on Friday.1 But we can expect the first official reviews to drop tomorrow. Those will be an interesting read for sure. Normally, reviews of Apple products are entirely predictable. This is not a knock on anyone who does
The Eyes Have It
The Apple Vision Pro Reviews Techmemeโ€™s collection of the reviews... Techmeme Roundup Okay, Iโ€™ve read most of the initial wave of Vision Pro reviews now โ€“ and watched a number of them on YouTube! I feel like I have a good sense of the takeaways. And I feel like those are
My 2024 iPhone Homescreen
Historically, Iโ€™ve used the start of the new year to post a screenshot of the homescreen of my iPhone. Each year, Iโ€™m late in doing so. And each year, I get asked when itโ€™s coming. This year, Iโ€™m later than normal in doing so โ€“ sorry, Iโ€™ve been busy spinning up
Dune 2? Iโ€™ll Be Dune 2 Viewings
Denis Villeneuve Refuses to Let Hollywood Shrink Him Down to SizeAs the follow-up to โ€˜Duneโ€™ approaches, the filmmaker on his return to the desert, Timothรฉe Chalamet, and how many more Dune movies he has in him.TimeStephanie Zacharek So many great, poignant, and heady quotes from director โ€“ one of our


โ€œBefore the game, a ladybug landed on my shoe. And you all know what that means. Thatโ€™s all I can say. Other than that, I donโ€™t know.โ€

-- San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk on his incredible, improbable catch that helped his team beat the Detroit Lions and head to the Super Bowl ๐Ÿž

Some Thoughts On...

๐Ÿ“ฑ The iPad in the DMA world

๐Ÿ”Ž Arc's new mobile search browser

๐ŸŽง Spotify's (feigned?) ignorance with Apple

๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿป Ted Lasso's impressive numbers

๐Ÿฅฝ How the Vision Pro helps Meta's Quest

๐Ÿ’ณ Apple's card weirdness with Goldman

๐Ÿ“ด A new project to consolidate mobile feeds

๐Ÿถ Amazon's new AI bot for shopping


  • Following Tokyo and Los Angeles, Orlando will be getting a Super Mario World as well โ€“ the largest one yet, it sounds like, as a part of the "Universal Epic Universe" (brought to you by the Department of Redundancy Department?), a new park being built with a new Harry Potter world, a How to Train Your Dragon world, and a Dark Universe (odd since it has been a flop when it comes to actual movies) world... ๐Ÿ„
  • Quentin Tarantino's last movie (yes, truly last, so he's been saying for years), The Movie Critic, gets its star: frequent collaborator Brad Pitt... ๐ŸŽž๏ธ
  • Billy Joel just released his first new song in 17 years (!) โ€“ it's pretty good! ๐ŸŽน
  • Speaking of new music, Pearl Jam apparently unveiled their new album at a quiet LA event this week, and a lot of people are buzzing about it, or so I want to believe as they've been my favorite band since I was about 12... ๐ŸŽธ
  • There's been a downside to all the choice in the craft beer world in recent years, and as such, many breweries are now simplifying their offerings (also, happy 10th birthday to SF's Fort Point Beer, in which my wife and I are small investors)... ๐Ÿบ
  • In 1949, cities in Ohio (where I happen to be from) held 6 of the top 15 spots in terms of U.S. median income. 4 of the top 7! Things change... ๐Ÿ…พ๏ธ (via Tyler Cowen)
  • Google's new Circle to Search functionality seems like exactly the sort of thing Google should be working on... โœ๏ธ
  • My former colleague Dean Takahashi interviews Unity's chief product and technology officer, Marc Whitten, who confirms that despite an utter lack of mentions in the initial press wave, games are coming to the Vision Pro... ๐Ÿ•น๏ธ
  • Sort of buried in Microsoft's recent earnings is a fascinating (though hardly surprising) tidbit: gaming has now knocked the Windows business down to 4th place in terms of Microsoft's largest businesses... ๐ŸชŸ
  • Did you know the British Army doesn't allow men to have beards? Well, only the person who tends to the goats is allowed one (seriously). But that may be about to change (as it has throughout the years with style trends and disease fears)... ๐Ÿง”โ€โ™‚๏ธ
  • ASCII Theater โ€“ exactly what it sounds like, you're going to want to see this... ๐Ÿ“ฝ๏ธ
  • Obit for David Mills, who was basically the internet's literal "Father Time" โ€“ what a contribution we all benefit from everyday. A great Michigan Man... ๐Ÿ•ฐ๏ธ

Take Me Higher

I'm not saying this is the best remix I've ever heard, and that everyone should immediately apologize to Creed for years or ridicule, I'm just saying you should listen and make such calls yourself...