Apple Vision Pro is Here: Build Apps for Spatial Computing

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Apple has finally released Apple Vision Pro, a product it sees as the platform of the future. This technology stands to revolutionize the way we interact with our devices by combining virtual and real worlds into one seamless experience.

At Mindgrub, we have worked extensively with mixed reality and VR projects. But most accessible devices to date have focused on fully virtual environments, which can feel isolating. Apple Vision Pro is different - it anchors digital objects to real spaces, creating a spatial computing experience. For example, you could anchor a video player to your living room wall. As you move, the audio moves with you, making it feel like these virtual objects actually occupy the physical space.

Your App is Already on the Vision Pro, But May Need Optimization

If you have an app in the Apple App Store, it's automatically available on Apple Vision Pro. However, without optimization, these apps won't leverage the exciting new capabilities.

iPhone apps in particular may encounter issues when ported directly to the Vision Pro:

  • Unexpected UI behavior: Apps may resize in unconventional ways or have controls spaced too densely for comfortable air tap selection.
  • Touch actions may not work well: Swipes, pinches, and other multi-touch gestures may need reimagining on the platform.
  • Non-adaptive visuals: Static UI can feel disconnected from environments when overlaid in physical spaces.
  • Limited Text-input: Apps can input text using dictation, a connected bluetooth keyboard, or an onscreen keyboard. Apps not configured to work with external input devices like a keyboard may have unexpected issues.

From our testing, applications optimized for iPad tend to have a better starting point. But even small optimizations can improve Apple Vision Pro apps, like setting transparent backgrounds to blend more naturally with real-world visuals.

As you prepare your app for this new computing era, keep spatial interfaces in mind. More generous spacing, voice control options, and AR-responsive elements can greatly enhance the experience. Our team can assess your app's current Apple Vision Pro readiness and provide optimization suggestions tailored to spatial computing.

Websites May Need Optimization for Vision Pro

Some companies like YouTube have chosen not to list an Apple Vision Pro app, instead directing users to the website. However, we're finding that not all websites work well on the new platform.

Apple Vision Pro uses eye tracking and air taps for selection, which can make it difficult to precisely target small buttons and controls. For example, early testers report frustration trying to use the YouTube video player controls on the website, as they are too small with the current selection method.

While websites are technically accessible on Apple Vision Pro's web browser, the user experience may be suboptimal without optimization. Consider testing your website to identify any pain points specific to spatial computing interfaces. Expanding touch targets and simplifying navigation can help ease usability challenges.

We're happy to help assess your website's readiness and compatibility for the Apple Vision Pro headset. Let us know if you need assistance improving the experience for your spatial computing users.

Creating Immersive Experiences

Apple Vision Pro opens up opportunities to reimagine apps with more immersive experiences that interact with objects in the real world. For example, retail apps could let users visualize products by placing 3D models into physical spaces - like setting a virtual lamp on a real table or "trying on" a pair of virtual shoes.

We’re actively developing amazing spatial computing concepts and hope to launch projects for our clients very soon. In the meantime, Apple Vision Pro’s launch catalog contains over 600 native apps exploring the possibilities and here are some interesting Spatial experiences to checkout:

Crouton a cooking app that anchors recipe instructions and timers onto kitchen surfaces for convenient, hands-free viewing

Spatial Sprinkles is a fun app that fills your rooms with celebratory virtual confetti.

Carrot Weather offers hyperlocal 3D weather maps mapped to real spaces so users can watch patterns flow seamlessly around them.

Evaluating and Enhancing Your Apps for Spatial Computing

Apple Vision Pro's launch ushers in an exciting new era of spatial computing, with additional devices expected from Meta, Sony, Samsung, Google and more. Now is the optimal time to get ahead of the curve in adapting your web and app experiences.

Schedule a consultation with our team to see how your web and app properties look on the Apple Vision Pro platform. We can host you at our office or capture videos and screenshots highlighting any potential issues identified in real spatial computing usage. 

Spatial computing affords revolutionary new means of human-technology interaction. With the right preparations and designs, it can help transform your web presence and apps into more intuitive and engaging experiences.