Apple Vision Pro apps offer 3D bonanza

Hold onto your virtual hats: in the lead-up to its Vision Pro launch on Friday, Apple announced the release of over 600 innovative and new apps timed to coincide with the February 2nd debut of its AR/VR headset.

The spatial apps are designed for Apple’s Vision Pro wearable technology and intended to give the user a “wide array of breakthrough experiences,” the company said the day before the launch.

Starting at $3,499, the customizable headset will allow users to create a fully immersive, virtual, three-dimensional experience in the physical realm that they can interact with using their eyes, hands, and voice.

Apple says the new visionOS interface will allow users to transform any room into a personal theater for sports, TV shows, and films; unlock new ways to collaborate, create, and view digital content; and transport them to stunning gameplay environments and exciting new places.

Apple Vision Pro desktop user
VisionOS frees apps from the boundaries of a display on Apple Vision Pro, providing an expansive canvas for multitasking and collaborating. Image by Apple.

“Apple Vision Pro is unlocking the imaginations of our worldwide developer community, and we’re inspired by the range of spatial experiences they’ve created for this exciting new platform,” said Susan Prescott, Apple’s vice president of worldwide developer relations.

Similar to how apps are arranged and manipulated on a Mac desktop, users can open the apps in a "Shared Space" desktop environment, or choose to go "Full-on" to completely immerse themselves in 3D content.

The Vision Pro dual augmented. The virtual headset is also the company’s first 3D camera with spatial images, video, and audio, allowing the user to place themselves in a panoramic wraparound of their personal content.

Apple Vision Pro collage
Apple Vision Pro gets 600 new 3d immersive apps. Image by Apple.

Even watching TV promises to be an exciting new experience, as Vision Pro’s ultra-high-resolution 4K TV becomes the equivalent of watching a 100-foot (about 30m) screen for each eye – also a boon for gamers.

Apple Arcade and Apple Music – where users can create unique larger-than-life virtual environments to play their favorite games or listen to their favorite music – are both integrated into the Vision Pro, including the ability to attend virtual music concerts and join with other gamers.

Apple's FaceTime app gets a spatial upgrade with “life-size” video tiles that appear to expand in a user's physical space as new people join a call.

Apple Vision Pro Facetime
FaceTime video tiles are life-size, and as new people join, the call simply expands in your room. Image by Apple

Besides the Disney+ app, and other typical streaming apps, sports fans will get dozens of options such as the Red Bull TV, NBA, and PGA Tour Vision apps, among others.

Shopping is expected to take on a whole new dimension with J.Crew’s virtual closet, and apps such as Wayfair's Decorify, and Lowes Style Studio.

Learning and exploring will also get the chance to reach new horizons, with apps like Night Sky transporting the user into their own personal planetarium, Voyager’s bird's-eye aviation experience, and the Hold the World app, allowing you to travel to London’s Natural History Museum and take a tour through immersive exhibits.

Apple Vision Pro Explore
With the Voyager by ForeFlight app on Apple Vision Pro, users can immerse themselves in a real-time aviation environment like never before and bring airports to life in 3D that can be viewed from any angle. Image by Apple.

Finally, for those looking to upgrade their workspace, the Vision Pro has an integrative "magic" keyboard and trackpad, project management apps such as Omni Plan and JigSpace, as well as collaborative apps like Webex, Zoom, and Slack, and workhorse staples such as Microsoft 365.

Brainstorming apps, such as MindNode, will organize the user's thoughts into bubbles that then float around them, while Navi translates conversations in real-time with live captions so users can see exactly what people nearby are saying.

“These incredible apps will change how we experience entertainment, music, and games; spark our imaginations with new ways to learn and explore [and] unlock productivity like never before,” Prescott added.

On top of all that, the tech giant boasts there are already more than a million apps available from the App Store that are compatible with the Vision Pro.

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