At the Apple World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2023 saw the unveiling of the much-anticipated Vision Pro mixed reality headset. In a recent announcement, Microsoft has confirmed the development of native office productivity applications for the device, enriching the Vision Pro's ecosystem with popular software staples — Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. In June, Microsoft suggested it would bring the apps and Teams to the Vision Pro and is now confirming it.
Enhanced Collaboration with Copilot and Teams
Microsoft's productivity suite is set to embrace the futuristic capabilities of the Vision Pro, with added Copilot support assisting users through text and voice commands. Users can immerse themselves in a Microsoft Teams experience specifically crafted for the headset, interacting with a virtual ‘infinite canvas' where apps can be resized and repositioned according to user preferences. During Teams meetings or chats, participants can handle 3D content intuitively and effortlessly.
The Teams app enables users to project their ‘Persona', a real-time digital avatar that mirrors facial and hand movements, thus offering a more personal and engaging communication in the virtual space. In the seamless exchange between devices, calls and meetings begun on the Vision Pro can be transferred to PCs or smartphones, ensuring uninterrupted connectivity.
A Future of Immersive Interfaces on the Horizon
With the Vision Pro's official go-to-market date set for February 2 at a price of $3,499 in the United States, Microsoft anticipates the incorporation of its Mesh technology, allowing for three-dimensional avatars and environments within the headset soon. Despite some major app companies like Netflix, Spotify, and YouTube abstaining from creating native or conventional mobile apps for the headset, their services remain accessible through the Safari web browser.
As pre-orders have commenced, both Apple and Microsoft are paving the way for enhanced mixed reality experiences, shaping how professionals might interact with digital content in a 3D workspace. While the adaptation of mainstream applications continues, the Vision Pro promises a new frontier for personal and professional productivity.