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Best Apple Vision Pro third-party apps in April 2024

There are several great apps for Apple Vision Pro already

Apple Vision Pro is an incredible piece of hardware, but it would be nothing without apps. Here are the best apps to try for Apple's spatial computer.

It has been a little over two months since Apple released Apple Vision Pro for purchase. Native software been slow to arrive, but a handful of apps have emerged as must-have options for visionOS.

As it is on any other platform, there are multiple types of software that can run on Apple Vision Pro. Those are native apps that take advantage of spatial computing, compatible apps that originated on iPhone or iPad, and experiences that offer 3D or spatial content.

The biggest roadblock for the platform so far is user adoption. Excited developers that have the hardware are already hard at work. Less convinced developers will probably wait until there are more units in the wild, before they drop cash on the pricey hardware.

AppleInsider will continue to evaluate visionOS software as it arrives, but this is the best of what is available today.

We won't be diving into detail on Apple apps since they have the platform advantage. Every Apple Vision Pro native app made by Apple is class-leading and will be hard to usurp by a third party — today. We'll see what happens when visionOS 2.0 is out.

Best Apple Vision Pro utilities

The catch-all utilities sector is the most active development zone for Apple Vision Pro next to entertainment apps. There are a lot of options available depending on what you want to accomplish. These stand out.

Widgetsmith is one of those apps that you should install on everything you buy right away. It always opens up new options for customization and it is an ease-of-use king.

The Widgetsmith app with open widgets like a black wall clock, green weather, and brown battery
Get glanceable information with Widgetsmith

One of the biggest uses on Apple Vision Pro is adding a clock and battery widget. visionOS doesn't display the time anywhere except Control Center and it is annoying not having the clock at a glance.

A similar utility called GlanceBar does what its name suggests — it keeps information available at a glance. It shows the time, date, weather, calendar, reminders, and battery remaining in a vertical stack of widgets.

GlanceBar is an interesting tool that gets regular updates. Additions we'd like to see is the ability to customize the sections, organize their order, and more functions like now playing media controls.

Bezel with 'AFK Journey' open on a virtual iPhone next to GlanceBar
Bezel with 'AFK Journey' open on a virtual iPhone next to GlanceBar

Bezel helps overcome the issue of trying to squint and see your iPhone or iPad display through Vision Pro. Instead, you can bring the device in via screen mirroring.

You can't interact with the display in visionOS, but being able to see what's on your iPhone or iPad is a big help in some situations. We've found it's great for bringing in apps not otherwise available on Apple Vision Pro.

HomeUI is a spatial smart home app that lets you control things like lights and view cameras. A cool aspect is bringing a control sphere object into your environment and placing it where a real-world light is.

A virtual calculator on a desk next to a real lamp and a router with a virtual light control on the right
PCalc and HomeUI

To close out this utility section we wanted to mention one of the oldest apps in the App Store — PCalc. It is still the best calculator app out there with a variety of customization option.

The Apple Vision Pro version of PCalc is basically an iPad app with visionOS window styling, for now. But honestly, that's enough for this great utility.

Best Apple Vision Pro entertainment and media consumption tools

Supercut is a new app that takes advantage of the Netflix and Amazon Prime web apps to offer a superior experience on Apple Vision Pro. Watch the content library by simply logging in and get access to 4K video with Dolby Atmos support.

An app showing Netflix with shows like 'Pokemon' and 'Bojack Horseman' visible
Supercut brings a better Netflix and Prime Video experience to Apple Vision Pro

While you're watching movies, you'll want a way to look up information about actors and episodes. Callsheet is a great universal app that feels right at home on Apple Vision Pro.

The next three apps all make YouTube viewing better in their own way on Apple Vision Pro.

Juno lets you view videos via floating full-window views similar to the TV app. It is a perfect replacement for the absent YouTube app on Apple Vision Pro.

Play can also be used to watch YouTube, but it works best as an watch later tool. Save your favorite videos, organize them with folders, and set it up to open videos with Juno.

A virtual 3D television showing a YouTube video
Watch YouTube the old fashioned way with Television

Television is a unique app that takes advantage of Apple Vision Pro's spatial platform. It lets you watch videos on a 3D recreation of different TV models from across the decades.

It only supports YouTube for now but is expected to gain more services later.

And, if you know a Star Trek fan, the Roddenberry Archive has teamed up with OTOY to develop The Archive. This app displays in full living 3d many Star Trek vessels, but more importantly and impressively, the bridges for many of those ships.

And, even if you aren't a fan of the show, it's an impressive technical demo for what the Apple Vision Pro can do. For now, the app is free. We've heard that it may go paid at some point, but we don't know the timetable.

Best Apple Vision Pro games

Castaway requires additional hardware like an iPad Pro, a capture card, and a game console. Once set up, the iPad can take the data from the capture card and stream it directly to Apple Vision Pro.

A window showing a streamed game from Nintendo Switch with Pokemon on screen in a battle
'Pokemon' on the Nintendo Switch streamed through Castaway

The result is a (relatively) low-latency way to enjoy playing video games or viewing other HDMI devices through Apple Vision Pro. Other streaming methods require video to stream through the internet, but Castaway uses a local connection. Unfortunately, to date, the app doesn't stream sound, but that feature is in the works.

These next three games are available in Apple Arcade. There still aren't any significant games for Apple Vision Pro outside of Apple Arcade except for perhaps Blackbox.

Game Room lets you play classic games like chess and battleship. It's multiplayer too and supports playing with spatial personas.

Alto's Odyssey is a beautiful game that utilizes Apple Vision Pro's 3D space. The simplicity of the game's controls translate well to the pinch gesture.

Synth Riders is one of the only Apple Vision Pro games that seem to check all the VR gaming boxes. It can be fully immersive, uses hand tracking, and is quite fun to play in any space.

The game is rhythm based, similar to Beat Saber, but without the wands. Instead, you guide spheres on a path to score points.

And, coming soon, some enterprising developers are working on streaming SteamVR games from a Windows PC to the Apple Vision Pro. We've got our eye on that one.

Best Apple Vision Pro Social media apps and more

There isn't much of a social story on Apple Vision Pro beyond TikTok. Apps like X and Instagram don't exist on the platform, but enterprising developers are working to improve our options.

A screenshot of X in the Dusk app showing a profile for Wesley Hilliard
Dusk is another native app making a web app much better for Vision Pro

Dusk is an X client that runs the web app in a visionOS wrapper. It works just like X, but with a much nicer interface than what's available in Safari.

Ice Cubes is a quality Mastodon client. Wes is a dedicated Ivory user — and Mike is not — but having a native visionOS app is still better than using compatible apps.

There still isn't a good native RSS app that prioritizes an OPML feed and nothing else. For whatever reason modern RSS feeds are trying to get smart when dumb and linear is meant to be a feature. For now, Feeeed works fine in compatibility mode.

Traditional writing apps still haven't made their way to visionOS. Runestone exists, but it's directed at coding and not word processing, so Wes is sticking with the Drafts Testflight of the iPad-compatible app until something more official comes along.

The start of something spatial

The inevitable global launch of Apple Vision Pro will undoubtably help get more critical and fun apps in the visionOS App Store. Until then, this handful of well-made apps will have to do.

A screenshot of the compatibility mode apps available on Apple Vision Pro like Books, Discord, and Drafts
Many apps on Apple Vision Pro still run in compatibility mode

There are new apps popping up on the App Store every day that offers interesting utility or interactions. One notable newcomer is "A Bunch of Things" that is filled with user-made 3D objects.

Apple Vision Pro is dealing with a simple problem with a simple solution — time. Early adopters will have to be patient as more developers create apps for the burgeoning platform. And, that probably needs to wait for a more mature operating system.

WWDC 2024 is being held on June 10 and Apple is expected to announce visionOS 2.0. That, along with new system-wide AI tools, could usher in a new range of powerful visionOS apps.