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Apple’s Vision Pro and Its Impact on the Media Industry

Lucy Trang Nguyen

Business Development Director - Emerging Technologies

June 7, 2023


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The entire extended reality (XR) industry has been waiting for this day to come – Apple unveiled Apple Vision Pro – its first spatial computer that seamlessly blends digital content with the physical world, while allowing users to stay present and connected to others. Vision Pro creates an infinite canvas for apps that scales beyond the boundaries of a traditional display and introduces a fully three-dimensional user interface controlled by the most natural and intuitive inputs possible: a user’s eyes, hands, and voice.

How Apple manages to convey the value of spatial computing

People have been eagerly anticipating Apple's foray into spatial computing for a reason. By integrating various XR use cases that might have appeared superficial and gimmicky on their own, the company has succeeded in delivering a compelling and cohesive experience that helps the general public understand the value of spatial computing. Whilst other OEMs are providing value on specific verticals like VR gaming, Apple focuses on an immediate content value by bringing the entire Apple ecosystem that users are already familiar with to Vision Pro and enhancing these experiences in entirely new ways. For example:

  • Replace your physical screens as surroundings become an infinite canvas.
  • Connect with people via FaceTime as if you’re sharing the same space.
  • Capture spatial photos and videos and relive your memories in 3D with spatial audio.
  • Watch movies, shows, sports, and immerse yourself in games on a giant screen with spatial cinema.

Vision Pro’s impact on media and entertainment services

During the WWDC keynote, it was announced that Disney+ will be available on Vision Pro from day one. The spatial platform allows Disney to bring fans closer to the characters they love and immerse users more deeply in their stories. The sneak peek of Disney’s content on Vision Pro represents aspirational use cases in immersive storytelling and next-generation sports experiences for everyone else in the media ecosystem. This precedent case will justify significant investments among other hardware manufacturers as well as content and service providers. 

Not only will it create a demand for content providers to enter new XR platforms, it will require them to think of a long-term business model and monetization strategy. And this marks the tipping point of the XR industry – we passed the stage of experiments and proof of concepts and are now entering a new phase of unlocking larger investments and business cases that will move the needle. Media companies will need to understand that XR will become a natural extension of media consumption and that they have to address the XR market to stay relevant. 

Embracing XR as an extension of media

The spatial platform “allows us the freedom to imagine and experience unlike anything we’ve created before.”, said Alan Dye, VP Human Interface at Apple. That also means that content services will have to quickly learn how to navigate through the fully three-dimensional user interface. How will their two-dimensional streaming platform behave in the user’s space? How can new capabilities such as eye tracking be leveraged to enable personalized content recommendations? How can the three-dimensional interface be leveraged to create non-intrusive advertising and gamified product placements? Content providers need to find the balance of leveraging new technologies and capabilities and still deliver a user experience that is familiar and intuitive to create a seamless onboarding experience to the new platform. The winners in the new market will be companies which really understand how their users will engage with their favorite content. It is clear that highly-engaged users will show lower churn than their non-engaged counterparts. 

Apple Vision Pro and Disney may set new standards for spatial UI and UX design but this is just the beginning of the journey. With Disney's investment setting a precedent, other players in the media ecosystem must take immediate action by embracing spatial platforms and actively studying user behavior within immersive experiences. This iterative approach will allow them to adapt UI, UX design, and content production effectively, ensuring their continued relevance in the evolving landscape. 

Building an effective go-to-market strategy for XR experiences

With a price point set at 3,499 USD, the Apple Vision Pro exceeds the budget of the majority of consumers and will likely primarily attract technology enthusiasts, die-hard sports fans, and gamers. What will the go-to-market strategy look like for content providers who want to embrace new spatial platforms like Vision Pro? Is it possible to charge the customer a higher price for content to capture this market opportunity? Perhaps it is time for content providers and content owners to explore carving out immersive content rights as a new rights category and monetization model. And perhaps this is the opportunity for operators to bundle XR devices with content partnerships to provide an immersive content library as part of a 5G package for their end-customers. 

There are a number of things that media companies and service providers need to define for a successful go-to-market strategy:

  • Hardware strategy: Which hardware is best suited for your use case, audience and content strategy? How can you make sure that your short-term and mid-term investments are compatible with future hardware releases?
  • Content strategy: How can you create a valuable content ecosystem for your customers from day one? How can you scale XR content and make production cost- and time-efficient?
  • Monetization strategy: How can you create a new immersive content rights category and build a business model around it? How can you create a monetization strategy by tying in advertising, sponsors, e-commerce to not pass on the XR content costs entirely to your end-customers?
  • Iterative learning: How can you start learning about user behavior from day one and iteratively adapt UI and UX at low cost and at scale?

Accedo can be your trusted partner to provide expert guidance for your XR hardware, content and monetization strategy. The modular setup of our Xtend solution suite enables you to standardize UI and UX design, yet maximizes flexibility in customization and allows for a fast go-to-market. If you are a content provider or content owner, we can help you lay the foundation for a new business model, preparing and bringing your existing streaming service to the new spatial platforms to ensure a seamless experience across viewing environments. If you are an operator, we will bring you together with OEMs, help you build a custom user experience layer, and connect you with content partners to create a valuable offering for your customers. Please get in touch to find out more. 

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