by Danny Goel, MD Orthopedic Surgeon, Clinical Professor and CEO – PrecisionOS
As I was sitting watching my 9-year-old’s swimming lesson, I looked around at all the different people and realized that after the launch, excitement and debate, many of them either don’t care, haven’t heard of it or have no idea about Apple’s Vision Pro….yet. For me personally, I was never in a position to watch something on TV during the day at 10:00am PST. Why? Well, I was either with patients or in the operating room worried about other things and had several other priorities. Now, of course, I have not tested the Vision Pro so will not comment on its features or functionality. This brief overview has nothing to do with the hardware but more to do with the potential post world-wide developers conference (WWDC) from Apple.
Technology and Healthcare
Healthcare has always been about creating value. When I started my practice 13 years ago, I had paper charts, and most things required a pen. Only in the last five to six years did we go digital with our patient records, but we still have a fax machine. Technology and healthcare are sometimes at odds hence the innovators dilemma in healthcare. In the case of patients, they want to talk to their surgeon, and in the case of surgeons, they want to provide the best care for their patients. Thinking of technology that enhances, accelerates or augments that experience is where my mind is.
With respect to the Vision Pro, there will be positive impacts to the other technology companies who are building this type of hardware. Competition drives innovation and a deeper focus on those features that are important. We all know that Apple doesn’t enter a market to lose and so through their financial analysis, deliberate observations of the market and patience, they see an opportunity and disrupt the tech world by introducing Vision Pro. My observations watching the keynote included compelling videos, connection to software and state of the art hardware while using a “new” term referred to as spatial computing. Perhaps I missed it, but I never heard the term metaverse once (which was not surprising). I was quite captivated by this term given that I think it highlights what we’re really talking about here. Spatial computing in the simplest terms is computing in 3D. I’m sure I’ll get some folks clarifying that for me (and I hope they do). This is really the big move. We now have a term that captures all of the XR world in where the great value will come. An old term, but re-introduced by the largest tech company in the world, will normalize it and become a point of discussion.
Regarding the price? Today, it’s impossible to know if this is too much or not enough as pricing is part of a larger value equation. If you save $1000 a month using a service, then you’ll pay some fraction of that. If you don’t, the price will reflect the value it creates for you or your business. As a point of reference, the brick phone in 1994 was $4000 which is equivalent to $11000 by today’s standards. Will I buy a Vision Pro, absolutely yes! Why? Because as a surgeon and tech CEO, I see some areas where this will be valuable in healthcare.
At the end of the day, and only my opinion, spatial computing / XR is here and moving forward (probably now faster than ever). The largest tech organizations are creating the hardware, whereas companies like ours are developing the software. Headset aside, when it comes to innovation in healthcare there is only one important consideration, figure out how to introduce a technology between the doctor and their patient to create value for both.
PrecisionOS is a leading provider of virtual reality surgical training for the medical industry. Healthcare professionals across numerous societies, universities, and medical device companies prefer PrecisionOS modules because they improve the transfer of knowledge and skills. Multiple, independent published trials confirm that participants using the PrecisionOS platform become better, more confident surgeons. PrecisionOS has collaborative affiliations with more than 65 major global residency programs where the platform is being used in more than 55 countries globally. Learn more at www.precisionostech.com.