Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3: A Comprehensive Comparison

Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3: A Comprehensive Comparison

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This month, both Apple and Meta unveiled their latest headsets, the Apple Vision Pro and the Meta Quest 3. While the two virtual reality headsets share many similarities, (or mixed-reality, in the case of Apple’s Vision Pro) there are notable differences in their features, design, performance, and price. In this article, we will provide an unbiased comparison of the Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3, exploring their specifications, price, design, displays, controllers, performance, battery life, apps, games, stock market impact, and more.

Before we get into all the specs, we’ll do something most other articles don’t do — we’ll put the tl;dr up top:

Our Analysis: Apple if you’re VR-Addicted, Meta Quest if you’re VR-Curious

While the Apple Vision Pro will come with a high price tag, its focus on real-life usability and high-powered tech means committed VR enthusiasts who have money to spare will feel serious FOMO if they don’t pick up this luxurious headset. The gestures feature, which forgoes controllers for hand and eye movements will feel like something straight out of Black Mirror. Additionally, Apple’s collaboration with Unity and their pre-existing catalog of games means there’ll be no shortage of gaming titles coming to the platform. Unfortunately, due to the high price tag, multiplayer experiences will likely be extremely limited.

On the other hand, Meta Quest 3 is a tried-and-true gaming headset that is focused on improving an already-existing business model. Unlike the Apple Vision Pro, no one is going to walk around in real life with the Meta Quest 3 — it’s largely a gaming-at-home experience. That said, with a large library of cross-platform games, users can expect a much easier time finding a communal gaming experience (particularly with popular titles like Rec Room, which boasts ~3600 concurrent players on average in 2023, and VR Chat, which boasts 22,000 concurrent players each day). As an obvious bonus, the Meta Quest 3 comes at a price tag 1/7th the size of the Apple’s Vision Pro — that isn’t a small difference. And lastly, many of the most popular Quest titles can be played on all three Quest devices, meaning users can opt for an even cheaper model with the now-$299 Quest 2. 

For all of these reasons, you should probably only get the Apple Vision Pro if you’ve already fallen in love with the VR experience through use of one of the other headsets. If you haven’t, you should at least try one of the cheaper Meta Quest’s first. As a final pro tip: Some people feel great in VR headsets, some people get nauseous. If you spend $3,499 on an Apple Vision Pro only to find out that VR makes you feel like you just got off a spinning roller coaster, you’re going to feel extra nauseous.

Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3: Stock Market Impact

We’re stock guys, so before we talk about the specs and pricing, let’s talk about how VR has impacted both AAPL and META shares. 

Interestingly, VR hasn’t had a positive impact on either stock. Take a look at Apple shares when they announced the Vision Pro at their latest WWDC.

Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3, Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3, Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3,

Additionally, when Facebook went all-in on Meta (renaming their company, changing their stock ticker, and spending $10B per year on the “Metaverse”) the stock market was not pleased. Meta lost more than ¾ of its stock market value over the course of the following year. This only reversed when Meta told shareholders it would begin a series of cost-cutting measures including massive layoffs to the metaverse department. Since then, shares made a full u-turn.

Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3, Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3, Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3

Essentially, for the stock market, VR is a “show me” story. Despite the best efforts of big brands, virtual reality has yet to capture the hearts and minds of the average gamer, and has remained a small niche in the market relative to titans like Sony’s Playstation and Nintendo’s Switch. While the Apple Vision Pro and the Meta Quest 3 could be the products that move the needle, investors are waiting to see results before they put their money behind these products. 

In other words, any gains from either headset are almost certainly not priced into Apple, and Meta’s recent gains likely have more to do with a recovering economy boosting its ad business and cost-cutting than the Meta Quest 3.

Now, let’s get into the pound-for-pound comparisons between the two headsets.

Apple Vision Pro Specs vs Meta Quest 3 Specs

Apple Vision Pro:

  • Price: $3,499
  • Release date: Early 2024
  • Chipset: 1 x M2 chip, 1 x R1 chip
  • Display resolution: 4K (per eye)
  • Storage: To be announced (TBA)
  • Battery life: 2 hours (with external battery)
  • Size and weight: Approximately 1 pound
  • Mixed reality passthrough: Operates in mixed reality by default

Meta Quest 3:

  • Price: $499 (128GB)
  • Release date: 2023 (expected)
  • Chipset: TBA next-gen Qualcomm Snapdragon
  • Display resolution: TBA
  • Storage: 128GB, TBA larger size
  • Battery life: TBA
  • Size and weight: TBA (40% slimmer than Quest 2)
  • Mixed reality passthrough: Full-color passthrough

Apple Vision Pro Price vs Meta Quest 3 Price

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro comes with a hefty price tag of $3,499, making it the most expensive consumer-facing headset among mainstream headsets. Additional costs may arise from accessories and custom Zeiss optical inserts, which are not yet priced.

Meta Quest 3:

In contrast, the Meta Quest 3 is more affordable, starting at $499 for the 128GB model. Meta has hinted at a model with more storage as well. The Quest 3 accessories are optional, and the headset is expected to launch at Meta Connect on September 27. Pre-orders are not yet available.

Apple Headset vs Meta Headset: Design

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro features a sleek design that resembles the Meta Quest Pro when powered off. However, when turned on, the Vision Pro’s EyeSight feature becomes apparent. This mixed reality headset integrates a curved sheet of 3D laminated glass, acting as both the lens for the camera array and allowing others to see your eyes during interactions. The Vision Pro includes 12 cameras, six microphones, and five sensors to track your eyes, hands, and voice, eliminating the need for external controllers. The modular design of the Light Seal and Head Band ensures a custom and comfortable fit.

Meta Quest 3:

The Meta Quest 3 adopts a slimmed-down, one-size-fits-all design compared to its predecessor, the Quest 2. It is 40% slimmer, thanks to pancake optics that enable higher-resolution lenses in a smaller space. The Quest 3 features a new camera array with dual 4MP RGB color cameras and a depth sensor on the front of the visor. However, it lacks an equivalent to Apple’s EyeSight feature and digital crown for immersion control. The Quest 3 incorporates hand-tracking capabilities and comes with sleeker Touch Plus controllers, featuring TruTouch haptics.

Apple Vision Pro’s Display Is Impressive:

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro boasts impressive displays, including a front display behind the laminated glass that showcases the EyeSight feature. It houses two 4K Micro OLED displays, one for each eye. Apple mentions “wide color and high dynamic range,” but specific details regarding HDR support or peak brightness are unclear. The Vision Pro’s pixel density is noteworthy, with a total of 23 million pixels, offering 64 times the pixel density of the original iPhone.

Meta Quest 3:

While specific details about the Meta Quest 3’s display resolution have not been disclosed, it is expected to feature improvements over its predecessor, the Quest 2, in terms of visual quality. The Quest 3 is likely to offer a higher resolution and pixel density, enhancing the overall visual experience. However, until official information is released, the exact specifications remain a mystery.

Apple VR vs Meta VR: Apps and Games

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro will run on a new operating system called Apple RealityOS, which will support a wide range of apps and games. Apple has collaborated with various developers to create immersive experiences, including augmented reality productivity tools, creative applications, and entertainment content. The App Store for the Vision Pro will likely offer a curated selection of high-quality mixed reality applications.

Meta Quest 3:

The Meta Quest 3 will continue to build on the success of the Oculus Quest platform, offering a vast library of virtual reality games and experiences. Users can expect a wide range of gaming genres, productivity apps, social platforms, and multimedia entertainment options through the Oculus Store. The Quest 3 will maintain compatibility with existing Quest and Quest 2 titles, ensuring a substantial library of content right from the start.

Mixed Reality vs Virtual Reality:

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro takes mixed reality to the forefront with its EyeSight feature. Basically, this means Apple is telling users they can take these high-tech ski-goggles into real life. By integrating a camera array and 3D laminated glass, the Vision Pro allows others to see your eyes during interactions, enhancing the social aspect of mixed reality experiences. The Vision Pro seamlessly blends the real and virtual worlds, enabling users to engage with their surroundings while immersed in digital content.

Meta Quest 3:

While the Meta Quest 3 primarily focuses on virtual reality experiences, it does offer a full-color passthrough feature. This feature allows users to view the real world through the Quest 3’s cameras, providing a glimpse of the environment without removing the headset. While not as advanced as Apple’s EyeSight, the passthrough feature still adds an element of mixed reality to the Quest 3 experience. That said, the Quest 3 is advertised largely as a “gaming at home” experience.

Battery Life:

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro’s battery life is estimated to be around 2 hours. However, it’s worth noting that this battery life can be extended by using an external battery pack or power source. Apple has not provided specific details about the charging capabilities or any potential fast-charging options.

Meta Quest 3:

Information about the Meta Quest 3’s battery life has not been released at the time of writing. However, the Quest 2 offered a battery life of around 2-3 hours, and it is reasonable to expect that the Quest 3 would aim to match or surpass that duration.

Performance:

Apple Vision Pro:

The performance of the Apple Vision Pro is expected to be exceptional, thanks to its powerful M2 chip and dedicated R1 chip for eye tracking and machine learning tasks. The combination of these chips, along with Apple’s optimization, is likely to deliver smooth and high-quality mixed reality experiences. The Vision Pro aims to provide top-tier performance for both casual users and professionals.

Meta Quest 3:

The Meta Quest 3 is anticipated to feature a next-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, offering improved processing power and graphical capabilities compared to its predecessor. The upgraded hardware will enable the Quest 3 to deliver immersive and responsive virtual reality experiences, showcasing impressive performance in games, applications, and overall system responsiveness.

Controllers:

Apple Vision Pro:

The Apple Vision Pro’s standout feature is its hands-free interaction, eliminating the need for external controllers. The headset’s camera array and sensors enable precise hand tracking, allowing users to interact with digital content using natural gestures and movements. While it lacks physical controllers, the Vision Pro’s hand-tracking capabilities provide a unique and immersive user experience.

Meta Quest 3:

The Meta Quest 3 will continue to utilize its popular Oculus Touch controllers. These handheld controllers provide users with a tactile and intuitive way to interact with virtual reality environments. The Quest 3’s controllers feature buttons, triggers, and joysticks, allowing for precise input and enabling users to fully immerse themselves in the virtual world. The Oculus Touch controllers have been praised for their ergonomic design and accurate tracking, providing a seamless and immersive user experience.

The Wrap Up: Apple Vision Pro vs Meta Quest 3: Which Should You Buy?

Both the Apple Vision Pro and Meta Quest 3 are poised to offer exciting advancements in the realm of mixed reality and virtual reality. The Vision Pro aims to revolutionize the mixed reality landscape with its powerful hardware, advanced camera array, and hands-free interaction, providing a seamless blend of the real and virtual worlds. On the other hand, the Meta Quest 3 focuses on delivering an exceptional virtual reality experience, building upon the success of its predecessors with improved displays, a vast library of games and applications, and the reliable Oculus Touch controllers.

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