Apple's Vision Pro will be US-only at launch, but these three countries are tipped to get it sooner than you might think

Vision Pro spatial photos
(Image credit: Apple)

Ever since Apple announced the Vision Pro mixed reality headset back in June of 2023 — during the same WWDC event that also saw iOS 17, macOS Sonoma, and more previewed — we've been waiting for more clarification on exactly when it will go on sale. Apple only gave us the vaguest of ideas at the time, saying that an early 2024 timeframe was the one that we should work to. But that timeframe was only for the United States, with an international launch not expected to happen until later in the year.

It's now looking increasingly likely, according to the latest report, that Apple will share more information about its plans to bring the Vision Pro headset to the United States as soon as this week. The same report claims that Apple could announce more Vision Pro availability details soon with an eye to making it available to buy in late January or early February.

But what about an international launch? There are some markets that Apple tends to favor over others, and the Vision Pro is no different. While Apple's home country of the United States was always going to be the first to sample the Vision Pro, a select few countries were expected to follow it. Now, it's thought that those countries will be the United Kingdom, Canada, and China. And those who live in those countries might not have to wait as long as they'd feared before they will be able to buy Apple's latest product.

Later, but not by much

This revelation comes via a deeper dive into Apple's Vision Pro plans shared by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Writing in the weekly Power On newsletter Gurman shared that "while Apple said the Vision Pro won’t launch until 'later'” in 2024 in other countries, I wouldn’t anticipate that to actually be that much later." He went on to add that Apple is "considering China, Canada and the UK as some of the first markets to receive the headset."

That's obviously very good news for people in those parts of the world, while we can then expect other international customers to get in on the act at a later point. Gurman's words suggest that an international launch might arrive within the first few months of 2024, a boon for those who wondered whether they might have to wait until much later in the year before they would be able to take the headset for a spin. Vision Pro is the most hotly-anticipated Apple product launch in years, and getting it into as many hands as possible is sure to be a key part of the launch strategy.

Of course, a sooner-than-anticipated launch is a double-edged sword. With a launch price of $3,499 (or local equivalent plus taxes), some buyers might now find that they don't have quite so long to save up as they'd expected.

A whole new buying experience

Launching the Vision Pro globally is about more than just making more headsets, of course. Apple is set to require that all headsets be bought at its physical Apple Stores — a decision that reported came about over setup and configuration concerns.

If Apple is worried that people won't be able to get the most out of the Vision Pro headset without help, it'll need to train its store workers up to give them the knowledge they need to make the headset perform to its best. That takes time, something that could yet push further launches further down the calendar year.

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Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.