Apple starts letting developers make apps for its upcoming headset

 (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Apple will start letting developers make apps for its upcoming ‘Vision Pro’ headset.

The company has released its software development kit, or SDK, for VisionOS, the operating system that will run on the hardware.

Apple announced its new headset at its Worldwide Developers Conference, earlier this month. It said then that the hardware would be available “early next year”, but that developers would be able to start creating experiences for it before then.

Now it has released the first part of that work, in the form of that SDK. It gives developers the tools they need to start creating what Apple calls “spatial experiences” for the headset.

Apple hopes developers will be able to “utilise the powerful and unique capabilities of Vision Pro and visionOS to design brand-new app experiences across a variety of categories including productivity, design, gaming, and more”.

Next month, Apple will start holding labs in a range of cities – Cupertino, London, Munich, Shanghai, Singapore, and Tokyo – where developers will be able to submit their apps and actually test them on Vision Pro hardware. Apple engineers will also be on hand to ensure that the apps work on the new platform, Apple said.

Development teams will also be able to apply for developer kits that will allow them to test their apps in their own facilities. Apple gave no information on what sort of form those kits would take – how similar they will be to the hardware that will eventually be released, for instance, and what restrictions they will have – or which and how many developers would get through that application process.

Apple’s Vision Pro software is built on the foundational technology from other Apple platforms such as iOS and MacOS, and developers are able to use the same tools and frameworks to build apps for the new hardware. But as a “spatial computer”, the Vision Pro also requires entirely new ways of using apps, and so developers will likely need to test their apps on the platform to ensure they actually work as apps within the headset.

“Apple Vision Pro redefines what’s possible on a computing platform. Developers can get started building visionOS apps…