Ergonomics of using the Vision Pro

Raises hand. Hi, I am! For my Mac, I am forced to construct an entire area just to arrange things so that viewing and using my Mac is marginally comfortable. I have to use special furniture to do it, and pay close attention to how it’s set up and how much I use it or I risk physical disability. I’d like all of that improved.

My iPad is better but it’s annoying to use in a range of use cases (in bed, on the move). I’d very much like it to be improved.

Does the current VP do that? Seemingly not, but give it a few generations.

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Yes, the AVP could solve your problem of where to put the physical Mac or iPad: the screens for these devices will be floating in a virtual space and can be placed anywhere in that space. The screens will still be the same Mac or iPad screens, but with a bit less sharpness than a physical iPad or Mac. I assume that the sharpness issue will be improved when Apple uses tiny screens with more pixels (though aren’t the pixels in the current AVP screen the size of a red blood cell? It will be quite a feat making them smaller and more dense.)

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I think this is a big deal too, but I’m not sure how the Vision Pro would improve on it for me. I too have created a highly customized standing desk setup that holds two 27-inch displays and is at exactly the right height for me; plus, it puts my keyboard and Contour Designs RollerMouse at the ergonomically ideal height for typing. I also have the back side of the desk set up with an old Aeron chair such that I can type on my MacBook Air and use its trackpad at the right height while primarily viewing a 27-inch display at the right height (thanks to a stack of books that raise it up). But most of my work is done standing because sitting tends to hurt my back and worsen the pain from various leg running injuries.

I don’t really like sitting. Even when watching TV, I’m more likely to lie on the floor and use a foam roller than sit still on the couch. Sitting is mostly useful for when I need to work with something on a surface, such as eating. I’m fine working in bed on a laptop for a short while, but it also tends to cause back pain after a while.

So I’m really unsure how the Vision Pro would fit into my work style. Since I need a keyboard for everything I do work-wise given that I’m a writer, I’d just end up standing or sitting much as I do now. It’s hard to get a keyboard to the right height while standing, so it’s not like I could work just anywhere.

And all that’s before the ergonomic question of how my body would react to a pound and a half on my face over long periods of time.

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I have a similar set up to you and it works fine – but it also means there’s only one place I can work. I can’t take it to the coffee shop; I can’t take it outside; I can’t use it while waiting for my daughter to get out of her dance class. I’m locked down to that location.*

Yes, I don’t think the Vision Pro is there yet. But I can see when it will be, and that’s a big shift.

*not fully – I use a docked laptop, so I could take the laptop and do those things, but it’s not the same experience I’ve designed for myself in my office.

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I also have tried to optimize my workspace for a keyboard, mouse and 27-inch screen. The original goal was to put the screen right in front of my face and the keyboard in my lap. As my eyes have aged and after cataract surgery, another goal is making the screen easy to read with my computer glasses, and that means avoiding tiny type. I have separate reading glasses which I need to read printed text because I have little depth adaptation, which makes me prone to eyestrain.

There is no “one size fits all” for vision with aging eyes. Our vision problems differ, so we need optics that are easily adjustable to individual needs.

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I’m in very much the same situation—I can work on my MacBook Air in other locations, but it’s always an inferior experience, so I do it only when it’s a lot more convenient or the only option. I’ve never understood the appeal of working in a coffeeshop that’s loud, uncomfortable, and full of distractions.

I can only see the Vision Pro helping in this way for tasks that don’t revolve around text. As soon as I have to write or edit, I’ll need a real keyboard, and that will push me back to workspace that’s ergonomically reasonable.

Or maybe we’ll be able to wear little harnesses with keyboard shelves, much like the cigarette girls of old movies. Wait, such things actually exist! @mcohen, @xdev, @bb1, worth a try?

In fact, Adam, I don’t see myself using my Vision Pro other than at home. If I want to work in my living room instead of my home office, I have a Bluetooth keyboard I can use on a small table in front of my sofa, so no need of a keyboard harness :wink:. But generally I tend to do serious work in my home office, which, psychologically, feels like my workplace; my living room is for living.

But how else will you write your Threads posts while drone-filming yourself wearing the Vision Pro on the Santa Monica beach?

I have a friend of mine who loves that environment. He actually can’t work when it’s too quiet. I don’t get that at all, but he has an app on his phone that plays coffeeshop ambient sounds for when he has to work at home! :man_facepalming:t3:

I just saw a Kickstarter for a gadget like that and read through it thoroughly before deciding it was rather pointless. I was more interested in it functioning as a tray for eating while traveling (in the car, camping, hiking, etc.) than for laptop use, but it seemed so cumbersome to hook up and adjust and it was quite heavy and not something I’d want to carry on a hike.

I do have some padded trays for lap use that seem a lot more practical. I keep one in my RV and it’s useful. With a laptop with integrated trackpad I don’t need-need it as the laptop has enough support, but it would work great for external keyboard and trackpad for Vision Pro. It wouldn’t work while you’re walking around, though.

The Verge is reporting many people who bought Vision Pros are returning during the 14-day period when they can get refunds. Apple fans are starting to return their Vision Pros - The Verge Ergonomic issues are near the top of the list of complaints.

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