Has Apple just propelled us into the era of spatial computing? Apple Vision Pro

February 5, 2024

At the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5, 2023, Apple unveiled the Apple Vision Pro, a mixed reality headset designed to seamlessly integrate digital content into your physical surroundings. This innovation allows users to view webpages, application interfaces, and messages within their physical space without the need for a traditional screen.

Taking a step back, it’s crucial to recognize that Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are not entirely novel technologies. Meta, formerly Facebook, has invested significantly in this field over the past decade, particularly with the Oculus Quest. However, the Oculus is currently more geared towards entertainment rather than productivity or computer-related tasks. The Apple Vision Pro seems to elevate the utility of VR/AR headsets to another level.

credits Apple

A noteworthy example comes from the YouTube channel Full Time Filmmaker, where the creator edited an entire video using the Apple Vision Pro. Surprisingly, the experience was not subpar. The key advantage lies in the capability to mirror your MacBook screen to the Vision Pro, enabling you to utilize the entire space around you for digital tasks such as coding and video editing. This technology holds the potential to revolutionize the way we interact with digital content, as users can control elements in the physical space with their fingers and eyes.

What implications does this have for the future of software engineering?

If the popularity of the Apple Vision Pro continues to grow, and other companies follow suit, it could establish itself as a device used in entertainment, business, and productivity, much like our reliance on smartphones and computers. This presents an opportunity for software companies to stretch the boundaries of creativity and develop more immersive digital products for their clients.

UX designers will need to explore different ways for people to experience apps that appear to be floating in space.

Around June 21, Apple released the software development kit (SDK) for developers to experiment with and create products for the new device. We highly recommend developers and software companies to start early experimentation, as Mixed Reality could potentially be the next major development in digitization.