Apple augmented reality glasses are finally on sale. And yes, although we are incredibly happy with the Apple Vision Pro release, sometimes doubts creep in whether the price of 3499$ is right for the product. Let's go through all the main features of these goggles and find out!
1. 3D layered UI
Many headsets before Apple Vision Pro have tried to achieve this kind of integration with the outside world, but few have succeeded. Here they are, pioneers, of interaction with reality. The layered responsive 3D design is what allows the user to see a beautiful picture from the glasses and at the same time embed it into the environment. Apple Vision Pro's digital overlay is dynamic. Simply put, it adapts to natural light and adds virtual shadows to surfaces where needed.
This is made possible by the unique LiDAR sensor. Apple Vision Pro continuously maps reality and builds a multi-layered picture. The user is in two worlds at the same time but sees everything as one complex picture. This responsive design is Apple Vision Pro's best new feature that will take the MR experience to the next level.
A new product often means a new operating system! Apple presented a new VisionOS, which is a technical core of the new headset. So, what will Apple Vision Pro show you in practice?
VisionOS should be very familiar to everyone with its intuitive interface. Therefore, the first thing that the developers added was windows for flipping through tabs. Everything, as we are used to on regular PCs and iPhones.
As Apple clarifies, volumes are SwiftUI scenes that may display 3D material in the Shared Space or an app's Full Space using RealityKit or Unity. In simple words, you can change the angle without changing the picture.
The last digital dimension you'll find in this operating system is spaces. It simply divides your interface into convenient niches where you can enjoy each app individually (Full Space). Or select Shared Space to view all applications at once. Thus, Apple Vision Pro’s Spaces provide the flexibility to customize your experience, whether you prefer multitasking or getting lost in a single app's world.
3. Item and tab management
Do you remember how in sci-fi books the main characters interacted with virtual objects? With Apple Vision Pro, this became possible. Thanks to the real-time image segmentation function. This feature enables you to effortlessly separate objects from their backgrounds and interact with them. The glasses react to your voice, gaze, and movement. You can enter the app just by looking at it. Or you can select an item then you tap your fingers and flick your wrist to scroll. There are 2 types of interactions:
Gaze to hover
Gaze to select
Apple Vision Pro gaze features are heavily inspired by Meta’s Gaze and Unity’s Gaze features, this shows the elegant way they use it within VisionOS. It sounds a little futuristic, but it makes it even more exciting!
4. Millions Pixels Display
Probably, you have already heard a lot about this feature from the Apple Vision Pro advertising campaign. The quality of the display in glasses is better than 4K TVs. Just so you know, that's roughly 23,000 pixels, which makes for an incredible visual experience.
Probably, it was this function that took on most of the costs and, accordingly, the price of the headset. Two micro-OLED panels provide this incredible level of pixel density. Among other things, the displays also support a large color spectrum and an outstanding dynamic range.
5. Intelligent Image and Text Detection
Say goodbye to endless scrolling and manual data entry. Apple Vision Pro leverages its powerful AI algorithms to detect and extract relevant information from images and text. This feature proves invaluable for tasks such as document scanning, language translation, and even optical character recognition (OCR). According to Apple itself, they use Natural Language Processing (NLP) and neural network to headset analyzes and presents the text as if it were done by a person, and not by a machine.
6. Low-Latency Chip
When it comes to delivering high-quality visuals, Apple acknowledged the challenge faced by headsets in terms of power consumption. With the Apple Vision Pro performing numerous tasks simultaneously, it naturally demands a significant amount of power while maintaining fast performance. To address this, Apple has introduced a groundbreaking solution by combining the M2 Silicon chip with a brand new R1 chip, forming a dual chipset configuration.
M2 and R1
The reliable M2 chipset is responsible for driving computational power within the headset while efficiently managing heat through its intake vents. On the other hand, the dedicated R1 chip focuses solely on minimizing visual latency. Utilizing this innovative in-house silicon, the Apple Vision Pro achieves an incredibly low latency of just 12 milliseconds, which Apple claims are 8 times faster than the human eye can perceive.
7. Spatial Audio Integration
It seems that the sound also promises to be immersive. Apple Vision Pro is equipped with dual-driver audio pods that help make the sound more realistic and reality-integrated. The glasses do not have surround sound, but the pods help you hear everything as if the audio was coming from you or from another object in reality. With Apple Vision Pro's spatial audio integration, sound becomes an integral part of the immersive experience. So, it doesn't have to sound like regular headphones or AirPods. Audio sources are dynamically positioned in 3D space, allowing you to hear virtual sounds coming from their corresponding virtual locations. Whether it's the rustling of leaves or the distant roar of a dragon, you will hear a “natural” sound. This is another of Apple Vision Pro's most important features designed to add a new dimension of realism to AR/VR games, watch movies, and perform the usual interface operations.
8. Spatial Photos
If we are a little familiar with spatial sound due to a large number of previous innovations in this field, then spatial photos will definitely arouse curiosity. We also decided to read more carefully about it. As mentioned earlier, Apple Vision Pro can capture a picture perfectly. What does this mean for photos and videos? That we can see the image and the people on it more voluminously and realistically! The new headset literally "scans" surfaces. So why should it be difficult for it to ideally preserve a picture person or a beautiful view? Apple promises users that they can completely immerse to a photo. This is a very nice feature that will help capture valuable memories and to revise them as they were in life.
9. Digital Avatar
One of the most surprising features of Apple Vision Pro is a rendered 3D Face. Thanks to the front sensors on the headset, AI can capture the look and feel of your face and create a virtual avatar based on it. This digitalized version will even be able to imitate your expression of emotions. This avatar can then be used in Facetime to communicate with users with or without a headset.
10. Iris Scanner
Security and authentication have been taken to the next level with Apple Vision Pro. One of the best features of the glasses is the retinal scan for login. This biometric security authentication technology consists mostly of Apple’s new OpticID to the already existing TouchID and FaceID.
As explained by Apple, Optic ID operates by examining a person's iris using LED light and comparing it to a stored Optic ID within the device's Secure Enclave. During the WWDC keynote, Mike Rockwell, Apple's VP of the technology development group, mentioned that the system has the capability to distinguish between iris patterns even in the case of identical twins.
Is Apple Vision Pro a new era in the gaming industry?
The new product from Apple has undoubtedly blown the minds of many fans of gaming, virtual, and augmented realities. And yet, it is unlikely to be a breakthrough. Most likely, it will be the first brick in the foundation of MR or mixed reality. The price will weed out the average user a bit and leave those who are truly immersed in games, IT, and VR.
However, what we can say is that Apple Vision Pro is a breakthrough for AR and VR gaming. So, perhaps, now is one of the best moments to create a game. The operating system and excellent visual performance provide the best platform for immersing yourself in virtual worlds. Whether it's monster sounds or pixelated landscapes, AR/VR games have a great place to live and grow.
To sum up Apple Vision Pro features
Apple Vision Pro represents a quantum leap in the realm of augmented reality and computer vision. From its seamless integration with augmented reality to its powerful object recognition and scene understanding, this technology heralds a new era of possibilities. With features like intelligent image detection, real-time segmentation, and advanced accessibility options, Apple Vision Pro truly empowers users to explore, create, and connect like never before.