Apple Vision Pro is expected to revolutionize the virtual office with an “infinite workspace” – even beyond physical boundaries.
Companies like Meta and HTC have offered VR solutions for the virtual office for some time. Apple’s unveiling of the Vision Pro yesterday, however, put a much more elegant spin on the concept of working with a mixed reality headset – at least if everything works as seamlessly as it does in the trailer. The Apple headset famously mixes the real environment with computer graphics to enable “spatial computing.”
For example, numerous virtual screens float in a real-life study, office, or hotel room. The outside world captured by the outdoor cameras can be smoothly faded in and out via a rotary control. If you want, you can close yourself off entirely or partially, just like with classic VR headsets, and let huge screens appear that extend beyond the boundaries of the actual walls.
Apple Vision Pro as a virtual office
The windows can be arranged freely, for example, side by side, one below the other, or stacked behind each other. When users open their Macbook, a large, mirrored computer screen automatically appears above it.
Apple explains, “Apple Vision Pro enables users to be even more productive, with infinite screen real estate, access to their favorite apps, and all-new ways to multitask.”
Integration with Apple’s ecosystem is a key selling point. Automatic syncing with iPhone, iPad, and Mac is designed to make accessing shared documents, messages, pictures, and the like easier. Apps like Keynote or the Safari browser also floated neatly above the physical desktop, at least in the pre-produced trailer.
The Vision Pro is operated with hand and eye tracking instead of motion controllers like other headsets. Support for Bluetooth accessories, including Apple’s Magic Keyboard and Magic Trackpad, should also become important for productivity apps. Alternatively, a virtual keyboard and voice input are available.
Furthermore, the Apple headset can connect wirelessly to a Mac. Combining headset displays with 4K resolution for each eye with custom catadioptric lenses, text and image details are supposed to remain very sharp. Apple calls the headset a “wearable 4K display” in this context.
Work and conferences in Mixed Reality
You can send 3D objects in the Messages app with the Vision Pro. The virtual objects literally pop out of a message, where they can be placed on a table, rotated, scaled, and viewed from all sides.
FaceTime calls, which are compatible with all Apple platforms, are also expected to play an important role in the work environment. Users of the Vision Pro appear to other conversation partners as spatial avatars that mimic real gestures and facial expressions after scanning.
The sound, which is tuned to the room, comes from the direction of the person currently speaking. As a result, group meetings and presentations should seem more natural than video chats. In addition, it’s possible to share videos and other content from apps with the Shareplay function.