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Vision Pro release: Apple Store goes down ahead of launch of new headset

iPhones, iPads and other products all unavailable through Apple until augmented reality goggles are launched

Andrew Griffin
Friday 19 January 2024 10:20 GMT
(AFP via Getty Images)

The Apple Store has gone offline ahead of the launch of Apple’s new headset.

The Vision Pro will be available to pre-order in the US from 5am local pacific time, 8am eastern, or 1pm in the UK. It will finally be released on 2 February.

Around three hours before that launch, the US version of the Apple Store went offline. It meant that it was not possible to buy any products – iPhones, iPads, Macs or others – through the store.

“Back in a blink,” an unusual custom message for the Vision Pro read. “We’re getting the Apple Store ready for Apple Vision Pro.”

Apple has always taken down its website ahead of its launches, and has sometimes been confirmation that new hardware was coming. The practice often means that one of the world’s most busy shopping sites is down for hours – and it remains unclear how much it is required for technical reasons, or whether it also helps Apple build excitement about new launches.

The Vision Pro costs $3,499 and is expected to be in short supply when it is finally released. Numerous reports have suggested that Apple has much more modest expectations for sales of the headset in its first year when compared to other products.

As such, those hoping to buy the Vision Pro when the store comes back online may have to rush to avoid delays in delivery. They will also need more information than usual: Apple has published guidance to customers telling them to prepare their iPhone to scan their face to get the right size, and to have their glasses prescription ready for the slot-in lenses.

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