visionOS 2: New Features and Improvements Unveiled

visionOS 2

visionOS 2: New Features and Improvements Unveiled

After Apple’s WWDC24, visionOS 2 was officially announced, and the beta is already available to all users. Here’s what was revealed

We have just concluded WWDC 2024, where Apple annually announces new updates for their devices for both consumers and developers. This year, a new device has joined Apple’s ecosystem: the Apple Vision Pro, which has been available for over four months. However, as the initial excitement fades, users are beginning to notice imperfections in Apple’s new visionOS operating system.

visionOS 2 has been announced, bringing new and improved features that will surely be useful. While not a revolutionary update, it still includes enhancements that will notably improve the Apple Vision Pro experience and offer exciting new functionalities to try out. Here is a full list of new features, that you can try out now, if you install visionOS 2 Beta version.

Spatial Photos

Watching 3D content has been one of the biggest features of the Apple Vision Pro, and for some, it’s even one of the main selling points of the device. Spatial videos are a significant part of this experience. If you have an iPhone 15 Pro/Pro Max or just the headset, you can record spatial videos to watch later on the headset. These 3D videos bring your recorded memories to a whole new level of immersion.

The videos are great, but what about the photos? Can you view 3D photos on the Apple Vision Pro? Now you can. On visionOS 2, You can even create a 3D photo from any existing picture, including those downloaded from the web. Simply select a picture, and the artificial intelligence will do the job for you; it scans the image and transforms it into a full spatial photo. This feature has been tested by many users in Beta and reportedly works great.

Photos app now available for SharePlay

Viewing your memories through Spatial Videos and Photos is fantastic, but it can feel lonely. Not anymore – at least if you know someone with an Apple Vision Pro. Now you can share your Photos gallery using SharePlay, with the Spatial Persona of another person appearing in your space, allowing you to enjoy the memories together, just as if the other person were in your room.

New Hand Interactions

If you have a Meta Quest 3 or 2, you may recognize this gesture: holding your hand in front of you and pinching your thumb and index finger together to open a menu. Apple has adopted this idea but improved upon it significantly.

First, you don’t need to worry about accidental activations, as it only works if you look directly at your hand. Second, this gesture works in two ways:

  • Pinching your thumb and index finger while holding your hand in front of you opens the main menu.
  • Flipping your hand over and looking at it shows you the battery and time. Then pinching your thumb and index finger opens the control center.

Mac Virtual Display can now be Wide and Ultrawide

One of the main criticisms of Apple’s Mac Virtual Display was its limitation to just one screen. While it still only supports one screen, with visionOS 2, you can now resize it to be wide or ultrawide, providing enough space to multitask as if you had multiple screens. Apple claims this is equivalent to having two 4K displays side by side.

Train Support for Travel Mode

With VisionOS 2, You can now use Apple Vision Pro while traveling on a train. Previously available for planes, and somewhat functional in cars and other forms of commute, this feature has been refined to work seamlessly on trains.

New Frameworks and APIs for Developers

Apple has introduced new APIs aimed at enhancing developer capabilities. These include:

  • Volumetric APIs
  • TabletopKit
  • Enterprise APIs

With these updates, developers can now resize volumes, benefit from improved object recognition and spatial understanding, and anchor virtual objects in real time to physical surfaces.

TabletopKit simplifies the creation of tabletop-centric games and applications, like chess, facilitating development in this niche.

Additionally, enterprise APIs promise to provide camera access, which means that Enterprise developers could use the full potential of Augmented Reality possibilities on Apple Vision Pro.

Live Caption

visionOS 2 now includes systemwide Live Captions that function with live conversations via microphone and audio from any app.

New Apple Immersive Content and Environment

A new virtual environment called Bora Bora is now available for visionOS 2 Beta users. Apple is also developing a series of Immersive 180-degree 8K Content, featuring a new extreme sports series with Red Bull, experiences from world-renowned artists like The Weeknd, and Apple’s first-party Immersive short film named “Submerged”, among others.

Mouse Support

Physical mice are now supported, and the Magic Keyboard will appear in fully immersive environments.

Rearrangeable Home View

You can now rearrange all apps on your home screen, similar to iOS 18 on iPhone and other updated Apple devices.

Recent Guest User

Guest users’ data (their eye and hand setup) will now be saved on the device for up to 30 days, compared to just a few minutes previously.

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