Apple's Vision Pro Hits a Snag: No Dedicated Streaming Apps from Netflix, Spotify at Launch

Apple’s Vision Pro Hits a Snag: No Dedicated Streaming Apps from Netflix, Spotify at Launch

Apple’s upcoming AR/VR headset, the Vision Pro, will not have dedicated apps for popular streaming services like YouTube, Spotify, and Netflix at launch. Instead, these services will only be accessible through the Safari web browser on the device.

Netflix confirmed earlier this week it will not offer a Vision Pro app. Spotify also indicated it has no plans for a dedicated app, though it did not outright confirm the report from Bloomberg. Accessing streaming content through the web browser provides a less optimized experience compared to apps designed for the headset like Disney+ and HBO Max.

The lack of key streaming apps stems from the Vision Pro’s high price point of $3,499 and narrow target audience. Streaming services don’t see enough demand to warrant investing resources into developing apps. Apple’s contentious relationship with Spotify could be another factor.

More broadly, an analysis by MacStories revealed none of the App Store’s 46 most popular apps will have dedicated Vision Pro apps at launch. Social apps like Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat are also not available. While iPad apps can run on the Vision Pro, developers can opt out.

It’s unclear if major apps are completely abstaining from the Vision Pro or just limiting access. But the lack of key mobile apps indicates challenges ahead for Apple in convincing developers to build immersive experiences for its new device. Relying on web browser access for streaming lacks the optimized entertainment experience customers expect.

The Vision Pro goes on pre-order tomorrow and ships February 2. If it gains traction over time, major streaming services could eventually come on board with dedicated apps. But for now, its app ecosystem appears limited. Apple faces hurdles in making the Vision Pro a mainstream hit and platform for virtual reality.