How Apple’s visionOS can pave the way for mainstream metaverse adoption
The future of the metaverse may lie in Apple's new Vision Pro product, but its not the hardware.
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The future of the metaverse is highly debated at the moment with Instagram pulling NFT support, lackluster growth of many metaverse projects, the potential security classification for metaverse tokens such as SAND and MANA, and notably the launch of Apple’s VisionPro with no mention of a metaverse in its WWDC conference.
However, simply because it was not said does not mean it was not there.
Apple is notorious for delivering products behind its competition after it has had a chance to perfect its hardware for the optimal user experience. Given the mixed reception of metaverse concepts across the broader public sphere, Apple may be wise to avoid controversial terms and focus on delivering a truly unique experience.
That experience appears to be a metaverse operating system (OS) as the Apple Vision Pro will launch using visionOS, a new OS within Apple’s portfolio, which already includes, MacOS, iOS, WatchOS, and iPadOS.
visionOS is the Apple metaverse, a suite of highlight interactive apps that embed themselves into a user’s surroundings, augmenting reality into a blend of the physical and the digital.
The metaverse future is evolving as we explore and test out novel ways to interact in the digital space. Furthermore, while Apple often leads in user experience, this is a new market for the tech giant, and there are plenty of experienced players in the arena already who have a strong working understanding of the insides of digital worlds.
One such player in the metaverse space is Matias Lapuschin, the Web3 Marketing Director at Sensorium. CryptoSlate recently spoke to Lapuschin in an interview, where he shared his views on Apple’s latest Vision Pro and visionOS release.
Spatial computing and XR
While Apple may not have explicitly mentioned “metaverse” or “AI” during the announcement, Lapuschin emphasized that Apple’s focus on hardware and operating systems reflects its commitment to emerging technologies like spatial computing and the metaverse.
“The absence of buzzwords like ‘metaverse’ or ‘AI’ in Apple’s announcement is not indicative of its disinterest or disengagement from the future of spatial computing.”
He explained that Apple’s emphasis on Vision Pro and visionOS underlines its commitment to providing top-notch devices and operating systems as springboards for emerging technologies. Apple’s focus on hardware highlights the company’s dedication to pushing the boundaries of VR gaming, AR experiences, and the metaverse, backed by AI functionalities.
Apple’s mixed reality strategy and metaverse impact
According to Lapuschin, Apple’s decision to use mixed reality as a bridge to the metaverse is a strategic move.
“Apple’s approach, through the lens of XR, seeks to demystify the metaverse and normalize the transition towards it,” he said.
Extended reality (XR)refers to the collective market involving extended reality technologies, which encompass virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR)
By developing a hardware and software ecosystem that allows for immersive experiences, Apple is future-proofing itself and paving the way for mainstream acceptance of metaverse platforms.
Potential value and utility
Discussing the Vision Pro’s price tag and utility, Lapuschin argued that skepticism surrounding its value would likely dissipate as the device permeates our lives. He explained,
“As the device enables new communication avenues, enhances remote work capabilities, and unveils novel applications, skepticism surrounding its value will likely dissipate.”
Lapuschin believes dismissing the metaverse as a distant reality might be oversimplified. He pointed out that the technological landscape is dynamic and can be upended rapidly with path-breaking advancements, such as the Vision Pro.
“The Vision Pro, for instance, has been designed to redefine human-machine interaction with its intuitive hand and eye-tracking technology.”
These features will enhance the user experience and galvanize metaverse developers to create immersive realities.
Sensorium’s alignment with Apple’s Vision Pro
Lapuschin highlighted Sensorium’s dedication to building high-quality immersive experiences, aligning with the presented vision for Apple’s Vision Pro.
“Our commitment to bringing the Sensorium Galaxy metaverse and our recently unveiled Sensorium Arc platform to Vision Pro testifies to our excitement and readiness to leverage Apple’s innovation.”
Sensorium empowers over 300,000 users to create and interact with AR and AI-powered content through its Sensorium Galaxy metaverse. Lapuschin believes that Apple’s new device could be the catalyst for expanding creative opportunities and broadening its user base.
Vision Pro in entertainment, education, and immersive tech
Envisioning the potential applications of Vision Pro, Lapuschin said,
“Imagine generating an AI-controlled DJ for a home party or engaging with virtual renditions of historical figures like Salvador Dali. The convergence of entertainment, education, and immersive technology becomes a tangible reality with the introduction of devices like Vision Pro.”
Apple’s Vision Pro launch is a nod to the future—a future where immersion and interactivity become central to our digital experiences. By embedding spatial computing capabilities in its devices and operating system, Apple is leaping forward, catalyzing the transformation of the metaverse, VR, and XR industries. In the words of Matias Lapuschin,
“The amalgamation of these technologies is not just the next big thing; it could very well be the new normal for entertainment and connectivity.”
With the global macroeconomic landscape in flux, unclear regulatory frameworks for digital assets, and the exponential growth of AI and LLMs, the future of the metaverse fears no worse than most other emerging digital sectors outside AI right now.
However, generative AI could be a significant catalyst for metaverse experiences over the next few years as NPCs come to life and world-building becomes as easy as describing what you want. It is an exciting future, and having a new player in the space with the size and UX expertise, such as Apple, the metaverse operating system of the future, could be the dawn of an exciting new era.