Photo-Illustration: Intelligencer; Photos: Getty, Retailer
Since its release last week, the pricey Apple Vision Pro has already been seen in a lot of public spaces: gyms, courtside at an NBA game, and even on the New York City subway. All weird yet all legal. But the federal government felt the need to issue a response after a series of videos showed users wearing their headsets in a much more dangerous place: their Teslas.
Videos surfaced on social media purporting to show drivers wearing the mixed-reality headset while operating the electric vehicles. In one clip, a man is seen on the road wearing his Apple Vision Pro with his hands interacting with the headset’s overlaid reality — and clearly not on the wheel. Teslas feature a driver-assistance program called Autopilot that aids drivers with parking, steering, and even changing lanes, but the company requires there to be a “fully attentive driver” in the car, as the vehicles are not fully autonomous. The video, which seemed to end with the driver being stopped by the police, was later revealed to be a stunt, as reported by Gizmodo.
Another video that showed a driver wearing the $3,500 headset in the company’s new Cybertruck prompted an obvious warning on social media from Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.
“Reminder — ALL advanced driver assistance systems available today require the human driver to be in control and fully engaged in the driving task at all times,” Buttigieg wrote.
Unsurprisingly, Apple has already warned its users against using the headset in unsafe ways. “Apple Vision Pro has built-in safety features to help prevent collisions and falls, but it’s also important to use the device in a safe manner. For example, don’t run while wearing Apple Vision Pro, use it while operating a moving vehicle, or use it while intoxicated or otherwise impaired,” its user guide reads.