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Vision Pro Resources

Apple announced Vision Pro during the keynote address at WWDC 2023. Below, I'm compiling the best resources and information I've found so far about Vision Pro programming in particular and spatial computing resources in general. If you have any questions I might be able to answer or if you know of any additional resources that should be included here, please drop me a line!

Side view of Apple's
Vision Pro

Speeds and Feeds

These are the technical details we know about so far.

Release date Early 2024
Price $3,499
CPU Apple M2 for main compute
Apple R1 for real-time processing
Displays 4k per eye
6µ pixel size
~23M pixels total
90 Hz refresh rate, switchable to 96 Hz for 24 FPS content
Sound Two speakers with spatial sound
Sensors twelve cameras for head tracking, eye tracking, gesture recognition, room-mapping, photo and video capture
LiDAR for room-mapping as well as photo and video capture
six microphones for voice input and audio capture

Articles and Reviews

These are a few of the better articles and reviews I've read so far. They're from writers who are familiar with Apple and who have given me good information in the past. Let's see if we can learn something from them this time too!

I think John Gruber's first impressions of Vision Pro and visionOS is the best article I've read so far set mostly from a consumer's or user's point of view.

Andy Matuschak has some great insights from a user interface and user experience point of view.

Naturally, Ben Thompson has a lot to say about Apple Vision as well.

David Smith gave his impressions of Vision Pro after receiving a demo at WWDC 2023. I would say he seems excited and enthusiastic about the platform!

WWDC Videos

Most of what we know about programming for Vision Pro comes from the WWDC 2023 session videos. However, Apple has been working on spatial computing and augmented reality for a long time. There are also older WWDC session videos about ARKit and Reality Composer which I'll try to dig up and add here.

Eventually, I hope to have links to all of the relevant session videos here and organize them in some sensible way. But I'm going to start by just linking to the ones I've seen so far, thought were good, and had something to say about so I can focus on the ones where I have something to add beyond just what's on Apple's developer site.


Monday kicked off with some big announcements! There were rumors that it would be the longest keynote ever. I don't know if it turned out that way, but it certainly felt like a lot!

Tim Cook begins his presentation of Vision Pro, visionOS, and spatial computing with his announcement of "One More Thing!" at about the one hour and twenty-one minute mark. Apple reveals many conceptual and technical details in the keynote announcement, but also leaves plenty of open questions.
I was perhaps surprised most by what wasn't shown: very little gaming or "traditional" immersive experiences. Apple seems to think they've figured out what mixed-reality (or "spatial computing" as they call it) is good for and it's not what I had expected.
Platforms State of the Union
More details about the new visionOS platform begin almost exactly one hour into the Platforms State of the Union. Here we start to get a better idea how the platform will look from a user's perspective (if you'll pardon the pun) and what tools we'll have as developers to build great experiences.
If you're already up-to-speed with the basics of the keynote announcement from hearing about it in the press, this is probably a good place to start from to see which sessions or documentation you'd like to take a deeper dive into.


Tuesday's sessions were jam-packed with information about visionOS. I can't think of the last time I saw a day of WWDC so focused on one platform. Maybe when the iOS SDK launched?

Build spatial experiences with RealityKit
This session is where I chose to start. It talks about using RealityKit (which I knew a little about but hadn't used before) to bring 3D models into your visionOS app. RealityKit uses an entity-component-system model to bring interactivity and animation to static 3D models. If it were just for games, it would be a game engine I guess.
This session talks a little bit about the difference between windows, volumes, and spaces but I think "Get started with building apps for spatial computing" is the better session for getting an overview of these basics.
Design for spatial input
This session is a deeper dive in spatial input principles and the standard input methods and gestures as well as design tips for making interfaces that are easy to interact with using these new input methods.
This is probably a good session for anyone who will be developing for the platform.
Design for spatial user interfaces
This session dives deeper yet into using familiar (and some new) user interface elements for user input in a spatial environment.
I think this is probably a good session for most people who will develop for the platform, but its focus is definitely on "productivity" style user interface components and not on games or immersive experiences.
Get started with building apps for spatial computing
This session breaks down the details and differences of windows, volumes, and spaces. It's the place to start for figuring out which of these basic user interface... containers? paradigms? you'll want to use in your application.
Meet Reality Composer Pro
If you're going to use RealityKit, you probably won't want to set up your scenes all in code. Reality Composer Pro is like Interface Builder for RealityKit: you can compose scenese, preview them, build shaders, and more. I think this session is a must-watch if you think you might use RealityKit.
Meet SwiftUI for spatial computing
I haven't used SwiftUI yet, but I'm getting the impression that I will if I want to do anything with spatial computing. It looks like this is going to be Apple's preferred (and in some cases only?) way to build user interfaces for visionOS. If you've already been using SwiftUI, you've probably got a leg up!
Principles of spatial design
Now that we've seen some cool stuff and have an idea what visionOS and spatial computing are about, this session brings us back around to fundamental principles of good design in the spatial environment.
I came away with the impression that Apple has been working on this for a long time and has done their homework here. It may be that these ideas and best-practices evolve some over time, but I think they'll prove as foundational as Apple's (and Xerox's and Microsoft's) early research on graphical user interfaces.


Enhance your spatial computing app with RealityKit
This session is a grab-bag of deeper detail on some RealityKit topics like: integrating regular SwiftUI (or UIKit) with RealityView via attachments, anchoring a RealityView to real-world surface (like a wall or table-top), using particle effects and video in a RealityView, and using portals to connect a virtual world with the real world.
Reading between the lines, I think this session exposes some indications of the types of experiences Apple thinks work well and that developers will want to create on the platform.
Explore immersive sound design
It's said that sound is the most important part of video and my own experience seems to confirm this. I hadn't yet given much thought to how that principle would play out in spatial computing, but this session really highlighted to me the importance of sound in making an immersive and usable experience.
Aside from pointing out the importance of sound, it also enumerates a variety of important considerations in designing appropriate sound for your experience. This was definitely one of the most eye- (ear-?) opening sessions for me.
Explore materials in Reality Composer Pro
As a developer who's fairly new to 3D, this session really got me excited to play around with Reality Composer Pro. The promise of being able to experiment with shaders in real-time using a node-based visual editor is very appealing to me — I wouldn't have thought that building custom shaders would make sense for the sort of projects I imagine doing, but this might make it a real possibility!
The demo definitely reminded me of the old Quartz Composer, which was also a very cool tool.
Meet Object Capture for iOS
I guess this session is a little off the expected path for visionOS development. I think an interest in spatial computing will create a new demand for 3D assets — particularly models — and that this technology might be one way to help satisfy that demand.
I think Apple has mostly pitched this as a way to get real-world objects into AR on iOS (and now perhaps the Shared Space on visionOS) for applications like online shopping. However, I couldn't help but think of the applications it might have for artists who are used to working in traditional materials like clay: perhaps it will act as a bridge for them to bring their creations to spatial computing experiences.
Take SwiftUI to the next dimension
Apple seems excited about SwiftUI and I'm sure they wouldn't want it to be left behind for spatial computing. This session covers using SwiftUI for bringing basic 3D models or full RealityView into a SwiftUI project as well as bringing SwiftUI views into a RealityView as attachments. It also covers recognizing new spatial hand gestures in SwiftUI.
Work with Reality Composer Pro content in Xcode
This session picks up where “Meet Reality Composer Pro” and “Explore materials in Reality Composer Pro” leave off: it covers how to load scenes you make in Reality Composer Pro into a RealityView, connect attachments to entities defined in Reality Composer Pro, play audio assets from your Reality Composer Pro scene, and wire up user inputs to custom shaders.

Official Documentation

Apple has a hub for visionOS development that they've been adding to. It started with some basic information about the platform (most of which was shown in the keynote). They've since added links to developer documentation and a beta version of Xcode with support for the visionOS platform.

The developer documentation includes an API reference and sample code which — I'm happy to report — also includes some guide-style documents to help get you oriented on the platform. Also provided are Human Interface Guidelines updates for visionOS.

I'll plan to update and organize this section as more documentation becomes available. I'd like to also provide some summaries and walkthroughs for common tasks as time allows and as I digest the documentation myself. Please drop me a note with your topic suggestions!