Vision Pro sales estimated at 160k to 180k over first three days

Vision Pro sales have been estimated at 160,000 to 180,000 over the first three days of pre-orders in an analyst report. That’s somewhere over 40% of the 400,000 units Apple was reportedly expecting to sell in the first year.

While the estimate sounds impressive, the analyst does inject a note of caution, and we’d also add our own riders to it …

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Ming-Chi Kuo posted his estimate in a Medium blog.

Based on pre-order inventory and shipping time, I estimated that Apple sold 160,000 to 180,000 Vision Pro units during the first pre-order weekend.

He does, though, include a cautionary note.

The instant sold-out and extended shipping times seem positive at first, but a key concern emerged: shipping times remained unchanged 48 hours after pre-orders opened. It indicates that demand may quickly taper off after the core fans and heavy users place their orders.

He compares this to iPhone pre-orders, where shipping times quickly slip – and then continue slipping, as demand continues to outstrip supply. Vision Pro, in contrast, has not seen shipping times continue to increase. This suggests that Apple didn’t have enough stock on hand to meet initial demand, but demand and supply are now balanced.

9to5Mac’s Take

While the 160k+ figure is encouraging, it’s not just Kuo’s cautionary note we need to consider here.

Kuo’s estimate is based on a combination of two factors. One – the slips to shipping dates – is known. The other – the amount of initial stock Apple had on hand – is itself based on Kuo’s own estimate, albeit informed by supply-chain research.

Kuo estimated that Apple had 60,000 to 80,000 units stockpiled prior to pre-orders opening. Given the way shipping dates slipped, and taking the middle of each range, he estimates that Apple now has to play catch-up to the tune of 100,000 units.

So the first obvious issue here is that Kuo is making an estimate based on an estimate. He’s perfectly transparent about it, but you can bet that a lot of people are going to be treating his numbers as reliable when they are much closer in nature to an informed guess.

Second, we’ve noted before that initial demand doesn’t tell us much.

We know from the iPhone experience that a huge number of initial orders are placed within minutes of pre-orders open – and that effect will be even stronger for Vision Pro.

Why? Because this is the ultimate early adopter product. Anyone who is willing to shell out $3,500+ on buying Vision Pro at this early stage likely wants it on day one. So of those 400k people, it’s entirely plausible that more than 80k of them will be in the queue to buy the moment it goes on sale.

So yep, of the two possible scenarios, this is the better one. But let’s not treat it too seriously, or read too much into it.

Before the commenters jump in, I should add that, personally, I’m not a Vision Pro naysayer. As I’ve said before, I think there’s huge potential in this type of product.

For working away from home, I absolutely want this. For example, I spend a month or so in Buenos Aires each year and usually share an Airbnb apartment. It’s not very sociable to leave a MacBook and two monitors on a shared dining room table, so it would for sure be more convenient to simply don a headset rather than set up my physical work environment each morning.

The same thing if I’m working in a hotel room just for one day. This is something I do quite often when I’m going away for the weekend, and just being able to rock up with a headset, keyboard, and trackpad is a tempting proposition.

I’ll likely be in the market for a later Vision Air 2.

Vision Pro is also a necessary first step along the way to an Apple Glasses product, and I think that one has the potential to be at least as big as the Apple Watch. I’m simply urging caution in reliance on a very loose estimate of Vision Pro sales – and premature conclusions about the device as either a success or failure.

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