Why We Are Excited To Become An Apple Vision Pro Developer

Finally an Apple XR Headset

The tech world is buzzing as Apple finally unveils its long-rumoured AR headset – the Vision Pro. Revealed at WWDC (World Wide Developers Conference) on June 5th, the XR industry has a lot of hopes riding on this new device, but should we? Draw & Code’s Co-Founder and CTO John Keefe and our US Lead Dave Lorenzini, an immersive technology sage who has worked with the likes of Google and Facebook on their AR platforms and headsets, have masses of experience and offer their initial thoughts on Apple’s belated entry into the space.

So, what are we looking forward to from Cupertino’s AR headset and what does a budding Apple Vision Pro developer need to grasp to be able to get the most from it? In the words of Tim Cook, it “feels familiar yet it’s entirely new”, the Vision Pro is both subtly and also not-so-subtly different to its rivals. Some of the familiar elements of the Vision Pro are no bad thing for a studio like Draw & Code – we’ve been working with AR and headsets for over a decade, as well as producing AR apps for the iPhone.

A Quest Rival?

The world’s most high-tech ski goggles are not directly pitched as an alternative to the Meta Quest Pro, the most obvious benchmark for a ‘passthrough’ device like the Apple Vision Pro. Instead they are angling this as a more creative professional and lifestyle device, the latter element feeling very different to Varjo’s enterprise-focused range or the current emphasis of Magic Leap on design and healthcare. There were a lot of dining tables in the keynote and not an operating table in sight.

The main play is to create a high-end and highly adaptable new display and the other emphasis is something that Apple is able to do better than anyone – to present an all-new device as a slick addition to their existing ecosystem rather than being a product that has to stand alone.

“Live, work and play; being an all-rounder rather than a specialist games or enterprise machine is the theme here,” says Draw & Code’s US lead and spatial technology visionary Dave Lorenzini, “It’s a utility play – every app you need will be mirrored, many will be enhanced.”

Who Will Use an Apple Vision Pro

However, Dave believes that there is a lot more to Apple’s big reveal than the tech specs or UX; “This is Apple, it means people will discover AR for the first time, even if they have already used AR on mobile, this will redefine it for them and that is exciting for our whole industry.”

Will the lack of games or a controller affect the success of the Vision Pro? “It’s less about virtual worlds, it’s about creating better reality.” Now that is a sentiment we can get behind.

What do you need to do if you want to produce an app or adopt another app for this new device? During the keynote, Unity were announced as supporting Vision Pro. This is great news for studios such as ourselves as we have heaps of experience with using Unity’s game engine tools to produce XR projects.

Familiar Features, New Package

“Developing for Apple Vision Pro should be a similar skillset to any other headset XR device so for Draw & Code it’s a natural fit,” Draw & Code Co-Founder and tech director John Keefe tells us, “We’ve worked across all ecosystems and there are familiar elements we’ve experienced in the mix here – the use of ARKit, tools from Unity, the reality dimming is similar to Magic Leap 2, the absence of a controller is like HoloLens, the passthrough is reminiscent of the Varjo XR-1 or Meta Quest Pro.”

It isn’t just the technology that is important here, when Apple adopts and interprets a new technology it can be transformative for our industry. “The big catalyst to start Draw & Code was the iPhone,” explains John, “We saw that interactive technology was about to get a lot more interesting but we were not ready to establish a company to take advantage of it but this time around we are ready to harness this device – we are one of the best equipped studios in the world for developing for Apple Vision Pro.”

It seems like similar technical skills as used in mobile apps are required but different design philosophies will be needed. That sounds like a challenge worth taking up. Whatever the technology, Draw & Code’s expert teams are well positioned to work with any platforms and tools. And as for design, we know exactly what works in mixed reality.

Picture of Phil


I’m the resident head of comms and partnerships here at Draw & Code. I work on strategy, sales, marketing and other vital areas at a studio that was founded on a dream and has spent the intervening decade trying to make that dream come true. I believe that immersive and interactive technologies are impacting on our lives and being in the epicentre of this industry makes every day a thrill.

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