Apple (AAPL), on Wednesday, announced that it’s making the tools necessary to build apps for its Vision Pro headset available to developers around the world. The visionOS software developer kit (SDK) is the basic software that developers will need to create new apps for Apple’s headset, er, spatial computer.
Apple says the developers will also be able to use its various other technology frameworks, including Xcode, SwiftUI, RealityKit, ARKit, and TestFlight when developing apps for the Vision Pro.
Developers will also get access to a new tool called Reality Composer Pro to preview 3D objects that they’re building for their apps.
“Developers can get started building visionOS apps using the powerful frameworks they already know, and take their development even further with new innovative tools and technologies like Reality Composer Pro, to design all-new experiences for their users,” Susan Prescott, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Developer Relations, said in a statement.
Apple debuted the $3,499 Vision Pro during its Worldwide Developers Conference on June 5. The headset features a high-resolution display and a unique external screen that shows people around you a kind of virtual version of your eyes to let them know you can see them and reduce the isolating feeling of wearing a headset.
I tried the Vision Pro at Apple’s event and was blown away by not only its visual fidelity but also its ease of use. You control the Vision Pro by looking around the screen, thanks to its eye-tracking technology, and tapping your fingers together to select the object you’re staring at.
Unlike traditional virtual reality headsets, the Vision Pro offers passthrough technology that uses its external cameras to let you see the real world around you.
While the Vision Pro is an impressive piece of equipment, the apps developers build for the platform will be the deciding factor as to whether it’s a success or not. And it’s unlikely that many consumers will be willing to fork over the $3,499 to buy the headset right out of the gate, though, I’m sure diehard Apple fans…