Skip to main content

Apple’s Vision Pro may help your eyesight in this genius way

There are still a ton of mysteries surrounding Apple’s Vision Pro headset, and one of them is how the device will work with prescription lenses. A new patent might have shed some light on that, and it reveals a pretty remarkable idea from Apple.

According to the recently published patent (number 20230258944), the Vision Pro could use lenses made out of liquid instead of glass. This would apparently allow them to be highly customizable, allowing you to fine-tune them to perfectly match your prescription and your vision needs. After we learned that the next Vision Pro could send you on a mood-altering trip, it’s another instance of Apple envisioning a wacky idea to elevate its headset.

A person tries on an Apple Vision Pro mixed reality headset in an Apple Store, with an Apple employee alongside them.

The latest patent states that “Each lens may have a lens chamber filled with liquid. The lens chamber may have rigid and/or flexible walls that form optical lens surfaces.”

It goes on to explain that “Actuators and/or pump and reservoir systems may deform the lens surfaces in response to control signals from a control circuit to tune the lens.” In other words, you’d press a button or rotate a dial on the headset and the device would morph the lenses accordingly.

The way this would work is a little technical. Apple describes how “Inorganic dielectric particles or other refractive- index-adjustment particles may be used to adjust the refractive index of the liquid in the lens chamber and thereby adjust the refractive index of the lens.”

Liquid gold

A woman wears the Apple Vision Pro headset while sitting on a couch.

Liquid lenses are not the only way the patent aims to improve the visual experience for headset wearers. To account for differences in users’ eyes, the Vision Pro could adjust the spacing between its eye modules so that they better align with your pupils.

This could be done by gathering information on the position and location of a user’s eyes using cameras, then providing a way to adjust the eye modules’ positioning (this could be done manually by yourself or automatically by the system).

The patent follows another that was published in July 2023, which outlined how a pair of augmented reality glasses may come with adjustable lenses that could be tweaked on the fly using the device’s Digital Crown.

While that revealed that Apple was working on implementing adjustable lenses into future products, the patent didn’t mention the possibility of using liquid instead of glass. The most recent patent has brought that idea to the surface.

It all suggests Apple is thinking carefully about how to account for users with different visual needs. We can’t know if its ideas are on the money just yet, but whether the company gets it right will come into sharp focus when the Vision Pro launches sometime in 2024.

Editors' Recommendations

Alex Blake
In ancient times, people like Alex would have been shunned for their nerdy ways and strange opinions on cheese. Today, he…
Does the Vision Pro work with glasses and contacts?
An Apple employee shows a person how to use a Vision Pro headset at an Apple Store.

Apple gave the Vision Pro headset incredible clarity. We know this because one of our writers praised its clarity after his own hands-on experience with the headset.

But that praise-worthy clarity doesn't matter, though, if people who wear glasses can't use prescription lenses to enjoy the Vision Pro's large, sharp screens. That might be one of the most important questions to answer for more than half of the U.S. population that wear glasses or contact lenses -- and the answer isn't great.
Apple Vision Pro with glasses
The Apple Vision Pro works with Zeiss optical inserts for vision correction. Apple

Read more
Apple’s next Pencil may work with the Vision Pro headset
All three versions of the Apple Pencil lined up next to each other.

A couple of news reports posted on Monday suggest that Apple has been testing a new Apple Pencil that can be used with the company's recently released Vision Pro headset. One of them even suggests that the new Vision Pro-compatible Apple Pencil could launch alongside new iPads in the next few weeks, but this is by no means confirmed.

Both MacRumors and GSM Arena cited people with knowledge of the matter, with the former saying that support for the Apple Pencil would “essentially turn your surroundings into the Pencil's canvas.”

Read more
Does the Apple Vision Pro come with a battery?
Apple Vision Pro as seen from behind, with the battery pack superimposed.

Apple's Vision Pro is now available for purchase, but you might be wondering what's included at the starting price of $3,500 and if its battery is sold separately. Given that there's not a battery inside the headset itself, that's a good question.

Along with the actual headset, the base model of Vision Pro does include a battery, plus: a charger, 5-foot charging cable, front cover, top strap, light seal cushion, and polishing cloth. That means you get everything you need to start using Apple's exciting new spatial computer as soon as it arrives in the package.

Read more