Apple has introduced the visionOS operating system for its new VR/AR headset Vision Pro. It enables a 3D representation of the user interface and, with the help of an iris scan, ensures the security and confidentiality of the data.
At the architecture level, visionOS shares blocks with MacOS and iOS, but adds a new “real-time subsystem” for interactive visual processing on the Apple Vision Pro. With the visionOS 3D interface, applications can be freed from the limitations of a traditional display, allowing them to be displayed side-by-side at different scales. The UI dynamically responds to natural light, casting shadows to convey scale and distance.
Interaction with the headset is mainly through eyes, hands and voice. The company has described how to look in the search field and just start speaking to enter text, for example. Alternatively, you can pinch your fingers together to select, or swipe up to scroll the window.
At launch, visionOS will support applications from companies such as Adobe, Microsoft, Cisco and others. The operating system supports medical software for displaying representations of the body’s anatomy and technical applications for visualizing physical phenomena, such as the behavior of airflow over real objects. Applications will be distributed through the new store, which launches concurrently with Vision Pro. In addition to the apps, more than 100 Apple Arcade games will be available “on day one,” according to Apple.
Together with the Vision Pro hardware, visionOS powers the EyeSight system, which projects the headset user’s eyes onto the device’s curved external display. EyeSight scans the face and uses machine learning algorithms to minimize image lag and reduce discomfort such as dizziness during use.
Apple also talked about a new security system in visionOS called Optic ID, which uses an iris scan for authentication. The data is encrypted and works with the Secure Enclave, a subsystem integrated in the Apple processor. The company said the telemetry data would remain confidential.