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Films imported through Movies Anywhere may not play in 3D on Apple Vision Pro

Movies Anywhere logo

Purchased films upgraded to 3D by Apple will sometimes only play in 2D on Apple Vision Pro if ownership was imported through Movies Anywhere — and there doesn't appear to be a fix.

Movies Anywhere aims to end the confusion of which service a user has bought which films from. It presents all the purchased films under one umbrella, and users can also buy from services via Movies Anywhere.

Unfortunately, the idea has hit a hurdle with the Apple Vision Pro. Apple has been highlighting the immersive video in Apple Vision Pro, and key feature is how the company will upgrade purchased movies to 3D.

If a user has ever bought a HD movie on the Apple TV store and a 3D version is now available, that user gets that 3D version immediately and for free.

Unless they bought it from Apple via Movies Anywhere. In that case, there's no free upgrade to 3D — and according to users on Reddit, no way to just buy the film again.

"I was just told that if I have 3D movies in my library that don't play in 3D. Sorry, out of luck," Reddit user From_the_Future wrote after reportedly speaking with Apple Support many times. "They will remove the 'play in 3d' button from that."

It's not clear why there should be any problem playing films purchased via Movies Anywhere, let alone why that problem would affect only some titles. While multiple people have responded to the Reddit thread saying they have the same issue, no one has spotted any connection between the affected titles.

There is a precedent for the problem, however. When Apple upgraded 1080p movies to 4K, there was a similar issue where not all titles bought via Movies Anywhere followed suit.

What the original poster and others have found is that they can't accept certain films don't work, and just buy them again directly from Apple. It isn't clear if this is a bug, or intended behavior.

"There is no solution for me to upgrade or repurchase in 3D either," wrote the original poster. "At this point, I can never watch my purchased movies in 3D according to Apple."

AppleInsider can confirm that buying a film for the second time is not always possible with Apple. If a version is released with new extras, Apple TV will recognize that a user does not have this latest one — but then rather than letting them buy it, will just playback the version they already have.

The solution to that, is to buy the new version of the film in a bundle of movies. This only works when the movie is available as part of a bundle, however.

Apple Vision Pro owners can watch 3D movies via the Apple TV app, and the films come from a range of sources including both Apple and Disney. Ahead of the release of the Apple Vision Pro, Apple began adding a 3D headset icon to movies including:

  • 47 Ronin
  • Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away
  • Everest
  • Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters
  • Jurassic World Dominion
  • Kung Fu Panda 3
  • Mortal Engines
  • Pacific Rim Uprising
  • Sanctum
  • Shrek
  • Skyscraper
  • Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas
  • The Boss Baby: Family Business
  • The Little Princess
  • The Nut Job 2: Nutty by Nature
  • The Secret Life of Pets 2
  • Trolls
  • Trolls World Tour

Disney+ also has about 40 titles in 3D, including a few Avengers and Marvel movies, and some recent Star Wars titles.

While the Movies Anywhere issue concerns feature films, Apple Vision Pro is also releasing other material in 3D. Apple has announced Alicia Keys's Rehearsal Room, and 3D cameras have been spotted at an NBA contest.