University of Iowa Professor Explains New Apple Vision Pro Device

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The Apple Vision Pro was just announced and it’s already the center of the conversation and quite a polarizing device. Juan Pablo Hourcade, Ph.D, Professor and Director of Graduate Studies for the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Informatics at The University of Iowa explains what the device does and gives a few use cases for manufacturing and perhaps even agriculture.

Dr. Hourcade’s main area of research is Human-Computer Interaction. His work focuses on the design, implementation and evaluation of technologies that support creativity, collaboration, well-being and healthy development for a variety of users at a wide range of ages. So, this is his area.

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The biggest challenge he explains, is for Apple to overcome the “social acceptance” barrier. Will people actually wear this pair of ski goggles on their face that often? And is the value of using it enough to make people shell out $3500? He’s not so sure.

While it’s true there are many use cases, for example someone could walk a beginner through a complicated repair. Or perhaps a doctor to conduct a telemedicine visit and get a better understanding of patient symptoms. But in the end, will the device be a common household piece of hardware like the iPhone or remain a niche-use piece of tech?

The device comes out in 2024, and while it may enable new forms of collaboration we’ve not yet seen, mass adoption will be an uphill battle, especially when it comes to privacy. The device has 12 cameras, some looking at your eyes, and others looking at your surroundings. In fact, Apple Vision Pro maps your entire house and surroundings so you can see others while interacting in a 3D world. Those functions are necessary for its operation says Dr. Hourcade, but that data will also be available to 3rd party developers making privacy a challenge.