Can Apple Vision Pro Be Used as a Monitor? A Comprehensive Guide

This article delves into the potential of Apple Vision Pro serving as a monitor, transforming how we perceive and utilize screens in our digital lives. By examining its compatibility with Mac computers through Mac Virtual Display, we explore whether this cutting-edge device can extend beyond its primary use, offering a unique blend of functionality and portability. Join us as we uncover the capabilities, benefits, and limitations of using Apple Vision Pro as a monitor, guiding you through the practical aspects and future possibilities of this intriguing application.

What is Apple Vision Pro?

Apple Vision Pro is not just a new product; it represents a significant leap into the future of spatial computing. As Apple's first device explicitly designed for this purpose, Vision Pro combines the physical world with digital enhancements, creating a seamless blend that extends far beyond traditional computing interfaces.

Spatial Computing Device

Spatial computing allows digital content to interact with the physical environment in three dimensions. Apple Vision Pro harnesses this capability to deliver experiences where applications are not confined to a screen but can appear and be manipulated in the space around you. This technology enables users to view and interact with digital objects as if they were present in their real-world environment, providing a revolutionary interface that moves away from flat, two-dimensional displays.

Key Display Capabilities

At the core of Vision Pro’s functionality is its ultra-high-resolution display system, which features 23 million pixels across two displays. This setup not only offers stunning visual clarity but also supports immersive applications that require detailed, lifelike imagery​.

The device is equipped with advanced Spatial Audio, which enhances the perception of depth in the virtual environment by making sounds seem as though they are emanating from a specific location in three-dimensional space. This feature is crucial for creating a convincing immersive experience, where audio cues play a significant role in how users interact with virtual elements​.

Additionally, Vision Pro uses a high-performance eye tracking system integrated with a ring of invisible light projectors and high-speed cameras. This system is essential for intuitive control, allowing users to navigate and interact with the virtual environment effortlessly using just their eyes. This eye-tracking capability is not only a breakthrough in reducing the need for physical controllers but also enhances the ease of use, making digital interactions feel more natural and immediate​.

Moreover, Apple Vision Pro can connect to a Mac using Mac Virtual Display, enabling it to serve as a private and portable display for your computer. This feature transforms the headset into a flexible monitor alternative, ideal for those who need a high-quality display that can be used in various settings, from work to travel​​.

In essence, Apple Vision Pro is designed to push the boundaries of how we interact with technology, merging the digital and physical worlds into a cohesive, interactive experience. Its capabilities make it not just a tool for viewing content but a dynamic platform for engaging with multimedia and computational tasks in entirely new ways.

Apple Vision Pro as a Monitor

The Apple Vision Pro, while primarily a tool for spatial computing, also offers intriguing possibilities as a monitor through its Mac Virtual Display feature. This functionality allows the Vision Pro to serve as an extended or mirrored display for Mac computers, transforming it into a portable and immersive screen.

Understanding Mac Virtual Display

Mac Virtual Display enables users to connect their Vision Pro to a Mac wirelessly, allowing the headset to act as a secondary display. This is particularly useful for tasks that benefit from a large, private viewing space, such as detailed graphic design work, confidential business analysis, or immersive entertainment experiences. When activated, anything you can do on your Mac's screen can be done through the Vision Pro, albeit in a virtual space that offers a unique 3D perspective.

This feature taps into the wireless capabilities of the Vision Pro and Mac, leveraging technologies such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to ensure a stable and responsive connection. By using Mac Virtual Display, users can effectively have a portable 4K display that they can take anywhere, providing a versatile tool that enhances productivity and flexibility​.

Technical Specifications and System Requirements

To utilize the Mac Virtual Display effectively, there are specific system requirements and technical specifications that must be met:

  • Mac Compatibility: The feature requires a Mac running macOS 14 Sonoma or later, ensuring that the system can handle the data throughput and graphical demands necessary for a smooth experience​.
  • Resolution Support: For Macs with Apple silicon, Vision Pro can display content at resolutions up to 4K. This high resolution is suitable for a wide range of applications, from video editing to gaming, providing crisp and detailed visuals that are a significant upgrade over standard monitors. For Macs with Intel processors, the resolution support is up to 3K, which still offers superior image quality for most tasks​​.
  • Setup Requirements: Both the Mac and the Vision Pro need to be signed in with the same Apple ID with two-factor authentication enabled. It's also important that both devices have iCloud Keychain turned on and are connected to the same Wi-Fi network to facilitate a seamless connection​.

Using the Vision Pro as a monitor through Mac Virtual Display not only showcases its versatility as a device but also highlights Apple's commitment to creating multifunctional and innovative technological solutions. This feature is particularly advantageous for users looking for a high-quality, private display experience that traditional monitors cannot offer. Whether for professional or personal use, the ability to use the Vision Pro as a monitor opens up new dimensions of usability and performance.

Benefits of Using Vision Pro as a Monitor


One of the most significant benefits of using Vision Pro as a monitor is its unparalleled portability. Unlike traditional monitors that are bulky and tethered to a specific location, Vision Pro is a lightweight and wireless solution that allows users to set up a high-quality display environment anywhere. Whether you're working from a café, traveling, or moving around different workspaces, Vision Pro offers the flexibility to carry your monitor with you without any logistical constraints.


Privacy is another crucial advantage of Vision Pro. The device provides a personal viewing space that only the wearer can see, making it ideal for handling sensitive and confidential information in public or shared spaces. This feature is especially beneficial for professionals who handle proprietary or personal data and need an assurance that their work remains private, regardless of their surroundings.

High-Quality Display

Vision Pro boasts an ultra-high-resolution display system, featuring 23 million pixels across two displays, providing users with an exceptionally crisp and vivid visual experience​​. This high-quality display is suitable for a variety of tasks that require detailed visual fidelity, such as graphic design, video editing, and viewing high-definition content. The immersive display also helps in reducing eye strain as it can display text and images in sharp detail, allowing for a comfortable viewing experience even over extended periods.

Unique Use Cases

  • Creative Professionals:
    For graphic designers, video editors, and animators, Vision Pro provides a dynamic canvas where creativity can unfold in new dimensions. The ability to work in a 3D space with high-resolution displays enhances the creative process, offering a new way to interact with digital content.
  • Confidential Work Environments:
    Legal professionals, executives, and anyone else who deals with sensitive information can benefit from the privacy that Vision Pro offers. They can work in open office environments or public spaces without the risk of someone else viewing their screen.
  • Educational and Training Applications:
    Vision Pro is ideal for educational purposes, where immersive simulations and training programs can take advantage of the spatial and 3D capabilities of the device. It can be used to create interactive learning environments that are more engaging and effective.
  • Entertainment and Gaming:
    While not a traditional use case for a monitor, Vision Pro's capabilities extend to entertainment, providing an immersive viewing experience for movies and games. This is especially appealing for users looking to enjoy media in a private, cinema-like setting.

Setting Up Vision Pro as a Monitor Using Mac Virtual Display

Utilizing the Apple Vision Pro as a monitor through the Mac Virtual Display functionality offers a unique and immersive viewing experience. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to set it up, along with tips for optimizing the display settings.

Step-by-Step Guide to Connect Vision Pro to a Mac

Check Compatibility:

  • Ensure your Mac is running macOS 14 Sonoma or later, as this is necessary for the Mac Virtual Display feature to work​​.

Prepare Both Devices:


  • Sign into both your Mac and Vision Pro with the same Apple ID.
  • Enable two-factor authentication for your Apple ID.
  • Turn on iCloud Keychain on both devices to synchronize keychains and settings​.
  • Ensure that both devices have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled and are connected to the same network.

Start a Mac Virtual Display Session:


  • For Mac laptops:
    Open your Mac laptop and make sure it's active. While wearing your Vision Pro, look at your Mac laptop and tap the "Connect" button that appears in your view above the laptop.
  • For Mac desktops:
    Look up to open Control Center in your Vision Pro. Tap the Control Center button, then select the Mac Virtual Display button. Choose your Mac from the list that appears​.

Adjusting the Display:

  • Once connected, your Mac's display will appear as a window within your Vision Pro. You can arrange and resize this window within the Vision Pro environment to suit your needs.

Tips for Optimizing the Display Settings

Resolution Adjustment:

  • If your Mac supports it, adjust the resolution up to 4K for Apple silicon Macs or up to 3K for Intel-based Macs to maximize display quality. This can be done via the System Settings on your Mac, under Displays, where you can select from available resolutions​.

Manage Ambient Light:

  • Reduce ambient light in your environment to enhance the visibility and color contrast on the Vision Pro display.

Wi-Fi Connectivity:

  • Use a strong and stable Wi-Fi connection to minimize latency and ensure a smooth display experience. Consider using a 5 GHz Wi-Fi network if available, as it offers faster speeds and is typically less congested.

Use Appropriate Scaling:

  • For text-heavy tasks, adjust scaling settings to make reading easier. This can help prevent eye strain during prolonged use.

Regular Breaks:

  • When using Vision Pro as a monitor, take regular breaks to rest your eyes and prevent fatigue, as the immersive display can be intense over long periods.

Following these steps and tips will help you effectively use your Apple Vision Pro as a monitor, providing a versatile and high-quality viewing experience that leverages the best of Apple's advanced display technology.

Limitations and Considerations of Using Vision Pro as a Monitor

While the Apple Vision Pro offers innovative capabilities as a monitor, there are several limitations and considerations that users should be aware of. These factors can affect how effectively it can be used in certain environments and for specific tasks.

Dependency on Being Worn

One of the primary limitations of using the Vision Pro as a monitor is that it must be worn to be functional. Unlike traditional monitors that allow users to view content from various angles and distances, Vision Pro requires the user to wear the headset. This can lead to potential discomfort or fatigue during long sessions, particularly for users who are not accustomed to wearing head-mounted displays for extended periods.

AirPlay’s Single-Screen Mirroring Limitation

Another significant limitation is related to its use of AirPlay for mirroring or extending the display from a Mac. AirPlay traditionally supports only single-screen mirroring, which means that users cannot set up multiple virtual monitors as they might with a physical multi-monitor setup​​. This can be restrictive for professionals who rely on multiple displays for productivity, such as traders, programmers, or designers who need to view several full-screen applications simultaneously.

Optimal Use Scenarios

Given these limitations, the optimal use scenarios for Vision Pro as a monitor are those where high mobility and privacy are prioritized over traditional desktop workstation setups. It's ideal for:

  • Confidential tasks where privacy is paramount.
  • Short-term focused tasks that benefit from immersive engagement without the distraction of a traditional office environment.
  • Creative work that benefits from a large canvas and 3D capabilities, where the immersive environment can foster creativity.

User Experiences and Feedback

User feedback from community discussions indicates mixed reactions to using Vision Pro as a monitor. Some users appreciate the novel experience and the quality of the display, highlighting the privacy and immersion it offers​. Others point out the constraints related to comfort, noting the challenge of wearing the headset for long periods, especially during intensive tasks​.

For example, users have expressed concerns about the practicality of replacing traditional monitors with Vision Pro, especially in scenarios requiring extensive use of keyboard and mouse. The lack of physical monitor attributes, like the ability to quickly glance at multiple screens, or the ergonomic comfort of a traditional desk setup, are noted as drawbacks​.

Future Possibilities for Vision Pro as a Monitor

The Apple Vision Pro, while already a remarkable device, has significant potential for enhancements that could revolutionize its capabilities as a monitor. Anticipating future updates and rumored features can provide insights into how this device might evolve to address its current limitations.

Potential Future Updates

  • Multi-Screen Support:
    One of the most anticipated updates could be the introduction of multi-screen support via AirPlay or a similar technology. This would allow users to simulate multiple virtual monitors within the Vision Pro environment, dramatically enhancing productivity for professionals who rely on extensive screen real estate.
  • Enhanced Comfort and Ergonomics:
    Future versions of Vision Pro could feature design improvements aimed at enhancing comfort for prolonged use. This might include lighter materials, improved balance, and advanced cooling systems to reduce heat during extended periods of use.
  • Wireless Connectivity Enhancements:
    Enhancing the wireless capabilities to support faster, more stable connections would address one of the critical limitations of using Vision Pro as a monitor. This could involve the use of newer Wi-Fi standards or proprietary wireless technology designed to minimize latency and improve the reliability of the visual output.

Rumored Features

  • Direct External Device Connectivity:
    There are rumors about Apple possibly introducing ways to connect external devices directly to the Vision Pro, bypassing the current limitations of needing a Mac as a middleman. This would allow for a more versatile use of the device as a standalone monitor.
  • Advanced Spatial Awareness:
    Future updates might bring improved spatial awareness capabilities, allowing the Vision Pro to better understand its physical surroundings. This would enhance the interaction with virtual monitors by allowing them to dynamically adjust based on the user's environment and viewing angle.
  • Customizable Virtual Environments:
    Enhancements could allow users to create fully customizable virtual workspaces where multiple apps and windows can be organized in a three-dimensional space. This would mimic the benefits of a multi-monitor setup but in a virtual, more flexible format.

These future possibilities suggest that while Vision Pro is already pushing the boundaries of how displays are used and perceived, there is substantial room for growth. As technology advances, so too will the capabilities of devices like the Vision Pro, making them even more integral to professional and creative workflows. Such developments will likely make the Vision Pro an increasingly attractive alternative to traditional monitors, blending the best of both worlds—immersion and functionality.


Using the Apple Vision Pro as a monitor through the Mac Virtual Display feature is a feasible and innovative solution that leverages the device's advanced spatial computing capabilities. This setup provides several advantages, including high portability, enhanced privacy, and a high-quality display that supports up to 4K resolution for Apple silicon-based Macs and up to 3K for Intel-based Macs​. These features make it particularly suitable for professionals who need a private and flexible display solution, as well as creative individuals who benefit from the immersive and detailed visual experience Vision Pro offers.

However, there are notable limitations to consider. The requirement for the device to be worn can lead to discomfort during prolonged use, and the current AirPlay technology supports only single-screen mirroring, which restricts multi-monitor setups​​. These factors may limit the practicality of Vision Pro as a replacement for traditional desktop monitors in some scenarios.

Despite these limitations, user feedback has been generally positive, highlighting the immersive experience and high-resolution display as significant benefits. Additionally, Apple's continuous development of visionOS and potential future hardware improvements suggest that many of these limitations could be addressed over time. Future updates may include better multi-screen support, enhanced comfort and ergonomics, and improved connectivity options, making Vision Pro an even more versatile tool for various professional and personal applications​.

In conclusion, while the Apple Vision Pro is not yet a perfect substitute for traditional monitors in all scenarios, its innovative features and potential for future enhancements make it a compelling option for those seeking a high-quality, portable, and private display solution. As technology evolves, Vision Pro is poised to become an even more integral part of how we interact with digital content in our everyday lives.

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.