Cupertino-based tech giant Apple is all set to roll out its biggest innovation ever, the Apple Vision Pro Mixed Reality Headset in markets all around the world very soon. The brand has confirmed that the headset is in the mass production stage and will start retailing in February. Before the retailing begins, the latest piece of news has taken everyone by surprise. Leading OTT Streaming platform Netflix has decided to not launch an app for Apple’s Vision Pro Headset. It is a very big snub of the new technology by Netflix, which is deemed as the largest streaming service in the world.
Neither is Netflix designing a separate app nor is it supporting the iPad version of Vision Pro on its existing platform. Netflix has stated that those who want to watch Netflix content on Vision Pro will have to do so via the web app. One of the reasons behind the decision is Netflix’s direct competition with Apple in terms of streaming.
The development has shocked quite a few people as Vision Pro is a 3499 USD headset and a first in the segment while Netflix is a must-have streaming service for almost everyone who likes to consume content. Together they would have made an impressive combination.
Netflix rolling out an app for Vision Pro was taken to be sure shot because Netflix currently offers apps for Apple devices like iPhones and iPads. Since Vision Pro will support existing as well as apps specifically made for it, Netflix rolling out support on existing apps would have also worked out. The fact that Netflix isn’t even rolling out support for the Vision Pro headset indicates it aims to adopt a wait-and-see strategy for the device.
In July 2023, Netflix did say that it would support the iPad app on Vision Pro, and that was when Apple had no plans to release a particular software for visionOS. A spokesperson from Netflix has now confirmed, “Our members will be able to enjoy Netflix on the web browser on the Vision Pro, similar to how our members can enjoy Netflix on Macs.” Apple has not spoken about the matter as of now.
Netflix also developed an app for Meta’s Quest headsets, although they haven’t received updates for years.
What does it mean for users?
Netflix not introducing or supporting Vision Pro means users will have a tough time accessing Netflix on the headset. They will not be able to download the content from Netflix to watch offline which means difficulties in watching it on a flight.
The users won’t have custom environments for streaming and no immersive backdrops to watch videos in.
Reasons behind the decision
The main reason behind this decision of Netflix is its direct competition with Apple for streaming service subscribers. The entities don’t compete in terms of hardware but the competition in terms of streaming subscribers is getting stiffer.
Apple is currently a very small player in the OTT market with less than 10% of users in the US but the service has been trying to improve by leaps and bounds, getting awards for its content, production value, and talent.
Possibilities are rife that Netflix doesn’t want to help the rival get more subscribers and thus has taken this decision of not supporting its mixed reality headset. Apple has been marketing Vision Pro as an entertainment device as well with pre-orders beginning this Friday. Programming from platforms like Disney+, Peacock, ESPN, and Amazon Prime Video apart from Apple’s streaming service has already been confirmed to be available on Vision Pro Headset.