Home » The Apple Vision Pro Could Be a Game Changer For Working On Your Car

The Apple Vision Pro Could Be a Game Changer For Working On Your Car

Apple Vision Pro Wrenching Ts
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These days, when you’re working on your car, you might have a YouTube video open on your phone, or a few webpages with diagrams for reference. What if you didn’t have to awkwardly fiddle with your smartphone, though, and that content could just neatly hover above where you’re working? Well, the Apple Vision Pro could offer just that.

The idea comes to us from TikTok user and YouTuber hotshottek. He posted a video in which he uses the Apple Vision Pro while installing a light bar on his Ford F-150 truck. As he works on the wiring in the engine bay, he references a YouTube video that he has hovering in the air over the radiator. He also has a reference table for the fuse box positioned neatly so he can check it against what he’s doing at a glance.

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We haven’t seen a full video on the complete install at this time. It’s possible that it was shot more as a demo. We have some questions as to how well the Apple Vision Pro would work in low light for fine, close-up work like automotive wiring. I’m pretty convinced it’s legit, though. Fundamentally, what you see here is a very real and exciting use case for mixed reality headsets like the Apple Vision Pro.

@hotshottek

2024 is weird #applevisionpro #apple #public #raptor #ford

♬ Memory Reboot – VØJ & Narvent

For my own projects, I’d love a set up like this. When I’m doing a dirty job, it can get annoying trying to use my smartphone to look things up. Back in the 1990s, family members used photocopies from repair manuals. They were great because you weren’t afraid to get them dirty. The problem is that copying a few pages out of a repair manual at the library only gives you limited information, versus the full wealth of the internet.

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In contrast, the Apple Vision Pro, with its gesture controls, lets you look stuff up online with dirty hands, no problem. You can watch videos, flip through forums, and pull up diagrams and leave them right in your field of view while you work.

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There is, of course, a caveat. I probably wouldn’t want to wear a $3,500 digital headset while I’m crawling under my car, getting covered in transmission fluid and coolant (more on that next week). The headset is expensive enough and delicate enough that it kind of self-limits its own use. I’d happily use one to wire up some lights on a clean, modern car, as seen here. I probably wouldn’t bring my Apple Vision Pro along if I was helping David with a big, greasy job on one of his adventures of oxidation.

Like a lot of other Apple Vision Pro content right now, this is just scratching the surface. There’s scope to go much farther with the right software. Here, we saw the user looking at a table explaining the fusebox layout, and they had it next to the fusebox itself for easy reference. But instead, what if the very fuses and wires themselves were highlighted, glowing in the field of view of the headset? No diagram required, just cut and splice into the wire that’s lit up, just like a video game.

To achieve such functionality, you would need software programmed to handle whatever you’re looking at. It’s hard to do in a general case, but if you’re working on something specific, it’s very achievable. For example, automakers could roll out headsets for their technicians that are able to highlight components, fasteners and connectors on their vehicles to speed up maintenance. This is already a thing in the world of electronics, where augmented reality systems can be used to highlight traces and components on circuit boards for easy identification.

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“But wait,” you ask. “Wasn’t The Autopian ahead of the game on this?” We sure were. Our own Jason Torchinsky was already pontificating on the matter last year. Noting the use of augmented reality in Boeing’s aircraft production, he floated the idea of floating diagrams and live highlights as an aid to maintenance and installation work.

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Torchinsky’s idea for how the Apple Vision Pro could help make his timing belt change on the Nissan Pao a success.

A tool like this can be of great value, and the more interactive it is, the better. Imagine the visual overlay highlighting all the fasteners you need to remove, and counting them as you go. Plus, it’s telling you what size tools you need for each operation. Then, when it comes time to put everything back together, it highlights each bolt hole until you install the fastener required. Maybe if Boeing had used that technology on that Alaska Airlines plane, their technicians would have remembered to install the bolts that were supposed to be holding the door plug on. I’m just saying!

I’m pretty excited about tech like the Apple Vision Pro, but more for the future than today. Right now, it’s simply too expensive to be accessible. Let us know whether you’d use a headset like the Apple Vision Pro for your shadetree tinkering sessions.

Image credits:hotshottek via screenshot

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Ron888
Ron888
12 days ago

There was a lot of talk of this a decade ago with google glass.It’s weird that it took until now to get it moving.

Ted Eckert
Ted Eckert
14 days ago
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