Apple Vision Pro Developers Losing Interest?

By Patrick Moorhead - April 23, 2024

The Six Five team discusses Apple Vision Pro Developers Losing Interest?

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Daniel Newman: Apple Vision Pro, are they losing momentum with the developers?

Patrick Moorhead: So there was some research that came out from a company called AppFigures that showed the precipitous decline of Apple Vision Pro developers. It came out on the first week, and you had 150 apps that were added. 3-25, the week of 3-25, there was a whopping one application added. And I compare this to the early days of the iPhone and it really was the inverse. You saw it just going up into the right, as opposed to this giant cliff there. And by the way, let me just first say that I’m not anti Apple. I just expect a lot from Apple given their resources, given their heritage, and I don’t like their monopolistic behavior that they’ve done. But I have to say that Apple Vision Pro does do some pretty incredible things, that its competition, that costs a half or a third, it does better, right?

Daniel Newman: No, I was just going to say, don’t you ever tell your kids, “I expect more from you?” Apple’s the kid that you expect more from.

Patrick Moorhead: Totally. And I do. So its video experience is pretty awesome. There were some really good reports from Anshel Sag and how good the PGA golf app was, but demand is falling off a cliff. And what I do is I look at the installed base, and for developers, you don’t want to just throw money in, particularly when you’re doing something dramatically different, and you can’t just take an iPhone app and slap it into AVP and have a good experience. You have to have proximal understanding. You have to have a bit of a different UI and experience.

So it looks like it takes incredible amount of work to do that. And I think this is a statement of future demand for this model of AVP. AVP 2 will be cheaper, it will be better. And AVP 3 and AVP 4, and maybe we will see a turnaround in that. I have it booted up my AVP for six weeks, n=1, but there’s not the killer app to go in and do it.

Daniel Newman: Pat, I tweeted something, it was probably one of the most viral tweets in a long time when I asked the question… What you’re seeing in the data is I think what we’re feeling without needing to do a lot of assessment, and that’s lost interest. You remember the week or two after it came out, people were driving up, and getting out of their cars, and they were wearing them and you were going to coffee shops and you’re seeing people, and everybody was talking about taking their first flight with their AVP.

So all this front-end, early adopting influence personas were out and about and they were largely raving about how amazing it was. But then after two weeks it just started to fade. And I just asked the question and of course it was controversial, but even Robert Scoble retweeted and shared that he was seeing, he’s always been a pretty prolific Apple fanboy.

Patrick Moorhead: In fact, he’s renamed it to the Cult, I think.

Daniel Newman: And so the long story short is that this is like a beta product that was made generally available. You have a small subset of users, you do have some really interesting and exciting use cases, it does not seem that the wider public is convinced that it’s a good use of $3,500. You have one, Pat. So I’d be interested. Sorry, I’m losing my voice. I don’t know what’s going on. I’d be interested, how many times have you picked it up in the last three weeks, four weeks? And feel free to share your use cases with me and the audience.

Patrick Moorhead: Video is the biggest use case.

Daniel Newman: Watching movies.

Patrick Moorhead: YouTube, even though YouTube doesn’t have a native app, watching videos on it with YouTube are pretty good. I watched a couple movies on it, and it is absolutely captivating. Now it’s super annoying that you’re literally sitting in bed watching a movie, you have to have the lights on, otherwise none of the proximal technologies work. And any time you move your hands, your hands come into the frame. So it’s super annoying.

Daniel Newman: It was like I was in a car the other day that had that gesturing on the panel. And as someone that talks with their hands, the radio station keeps changing, the volume kept going up, it kept swiping, because the idea of gesturing is a good idea until you actually meet someone like me that talks like this. All right, so bottom line is a lot of work to do for Apple.

Patrick Moorhead
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Patrick founded the firm based on his real-world world technology experiences with the understanding of what he wasn’t getting from analysts and consultants. Ten years later, Patrick is ranked #1 among technology industry analysts in terms of “power” (ARInsights)  in “press citations” (Apollo Research). Moorhead is a contributor at Forbes and frequently appears on CNBC. He is a broad-based analyst covering a wide variety of topics including the cloud, enterprise SaaS, collaboration, client computing, and semiconductors. He has 30 years of experience including 15 years of executive experience at high tech companies (NCR, AT&T, Compaq, now HP, and AMD) leading strategy, product management, product marketing, and corporate marketing, including three industry board appointments.