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Ready to Innovate? Explore Apple Vision Pro Apps for Managers and Analystsby@nastyakostina
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6,316 reads

Ready to Innovate? Explore Apple Vision Pro Apps for Managers and Analysts

by Anastasiia KostinaMarch 26th, 2024
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After the release of Apple Vision Pro since WWDC2023, I finally had the chance to try it out. Keynote and PowerPoint are excellent for final adjustments and practicing presentations, but the virtual keyboard can be cumbersome. FreeForm is limited but smooth, while Figma and Miro struggle with the interface. Mind Note shines with fluid node movement and a seamless experience. Overall, Vision Pro shows promise for management and system design, but there is a room for improvement.
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Since WWDC2023, I was dying to try the Apple Vision Pro and see all its potential for my usual tasks. Apple showcased how this technology could revolutionize our workspaces and redefine our approach to tasks and creativity. I was particularly intrigued by its implications for IT management and systems design.


Currently, we rely on a variety of tools to create, design, and present our ideas. But what if we could perform these tasks in a 3D space on a daily basis? I believe Apple might have the answer.


Recently, I finally had the chance to try out available apps for presentations, mind mapping, drawing, and designing. I'm here to share my impressions and thoughts.

Presentations: Key Note and Microsoft PowerPoint

Already, you can find two of the most popular solutions adapted for Vision Pro: Key Note and Microsoft PowerPoint. It´s hard for me to choose between them, and I don´t think I have to. Both products are terrific and suggest new opportunities. I guess everyone can stick to their favorite or familiar product without worrying about quality and responsiveness.

Interface

For both KeyNote and Microsoft PowerPoint, the interface hasn't undergone significant changes; rather, it has been refined to accommodate eye control. While some actions took me time to figure out, overall, the interface feels intuitive and user-friendly. I enjoyed it both with and without the environment, but the former is preferable for me as it allows me to concentrate on my work without distractions.


KeyNote with environment


PowerPoint with environment


Killer Features

For KeyNote, definitely, rehearsal environments is a killer feature! It works amazing, and you can feel yourself in a conference room or in a theater. You can see your slides for practice and choose the view: with or without notes, show the next slide or not, and so on. Unfortunately, there are no people simulations. I suppose there might be Apple personas in the future.


KeyNote, Conference room environment, you can see all your slides


KeyNote, Conference room environment, switching between slides


KeyNote, Conference room environment, slides panel


KeyNote, Theater environment, audience view with slides panel


KeyNote, Theater environment, presenter view with slides panel


KeyNote, Theater environment, switching environments



For PowerPoint, there is information from the Microsoft blog:

Use PowerPoint to make a lasting impression with powerful and customizable slides and presentations that make you stand out. The Immersive Environment of Apple Vision Pro allows you to practice your presentation like you are presenting to an audience.


Truly you can work with any app in the Vision Pro environment (not just PowerPoint), those are forest, moon, sky, and so on. However, rehearsal environments with a conference room or a theater are particularly a KeyNote feature, and you cannot use it in PowerPoint, at least for now. For sure, you can practice your presentation in any standard environment, but that´s not the same experience.


PowerPoint, working with slides


PowerPoint, presenter view in an environment

Drawbacks

The main drawback I've encountered while working with presentations via Vision Pro is the virtual keyboard.


Virtual keyboard


As someone who frequently creates detailed presentations involving numbers and text, composing these elements directly on Vision Pro can be challenging. The responsiveness of the virtual keyboard is lacking, resulting in slower typing and more errors. For now, I would choose either to connect a physical keyboard or to use my laptop as the foundation for presentations - Apple Vision Pro allows me to do it.


Moreover, I would say that it was difficult for me to work with text and numerical blocks for a long time in Vision Pro. It's too cumbersome for me, and I can't relax like when watching a movie. I have to sit, type, and think while wearing a heavy thing on my head. That isn't as comfortable for me, but this is a very specific problem.

The Verdict

Keynote and PowerPoint on Vision Pro are perfect for making final adjustments and practicing your presentation. You can immerse yourself in the environment and focus on your work. You can enlarge the screen significantly, allowing you to easily view all your notes and slides.


Moving slides and blocks, changing pictures, and leaving notes are all effortless. This experience is much better than working with just a laptop.


Unfortunately, even though the virtual keyboard is among the best on the market, it's not yet perfect. Therefore, it might be challenging to create an entire presentation from scratch using only Vision Pro. However, connecting with a laptop works seamlessly, making it still possible.

I will use Vision Pro for final preparations and to practice my presentations, and I would definitely recommend giving it a try.


PowerPoint, working with presentation

Drawing and Designing: FreeForm, Figma, Miro

This section, to be honest, left me somewhat disappointed. While FreeForm performs adequately, its functionality is quite limited. Miro and Figma offer a broader range of features, but, unfortunately, none of them are adapted for Vision Pro (Miro is available as an iPad version, and Figma is available in Safari and in a wrapper application), so the responsiveness is low.

Killer Features

FreeForm is a standard Apple app available on iPhone, MacBook, and iPad. As an Apple application, it works smoothly. Gestures are instantly recognized. I particularly enjoyed the ability to bring it close and use it in a manner reminiscent of an iPad where you can draw with a finger instead of gestures. The initial experience of feeling the paper with my brain was genuinely perplexing.


FreeForm, drawing as on an iPad


There is a library with different elements, so I see it as a specific tool for designing and not just drawing, but for now, it's more like a vision of the future.


FreeForm, library of elements


Figma and Miro have all their powerful features available but only as unadapted apps.


Figma in a wrapper application and Safari


Drawbacks

Regrettably, FreeForm offers only a limited set of functions for now. Whether additional features will be introduced remains uncertain. Presently, it seems suitable only for basic drawing tasks. Moreover, even though the gestures are recognized well, it's still difficult to design something quickly. It took too much time and patience to draw this simple scheme:


FreeForm, drawing process


Figma and Miro, among other apps, encounter challenges in adapting to the Vision Pro interface. A common issue is the difficulty in processing gestures, which hampers smooth usage. For example, selecting an object may unintentionally move the entire canvas, leading to inefficiencies in work processes. Or you can struggle with object capture. These challenges pose significant obstacles to productivity and make those apps uncomfortable to use on Vision Pro.

The Verdict

I recognize the potential of this technology. Combining the strengths of the apps could result in amazing tools. I believe that utilizing Vision Pro for drawing and designing has the capacity to revolutionize the entire process. The flexibility to design while standing, sitting, or using the screen as an iPad is truly remarkable!


However, we must exercise patience and allow the apps the time needed to refine and expand their functionalities further. I eagerly await the opportunity to see and experience these advances firsthand.

Mind Mapping: Miro and Mind Note

As I mentioned earlier, many well-known apps like Miro and others are not optimized for Vision Pro. While you can access them through a web browser or their iPad versions, it's not as convenient. When discussing Vision Pro-specific apps, one notable mention is Mind Note. The interface caught my eye with its aesthetic appeal, although not everything functions flawlessly.

Killer Features

One standout feature in Mind Note is the fluid movement of nodes, which makes working with mind maps exceptionally convenient. While Miro also offers this feature, Mind Note on Vision Pro expands it with its smooth performance and adaptivity. Vision Pro seems like the most efficient way to work with a mind map, making you feel like a hero creating something in a movie.


Manipulating nodes, switching between them, grouping and ungrouping, and adding new ones are all effortlessly executed using gestures, much quicker than on a laptop or iPad.


Mind Note, moving a node


Miro, working with a node


Furthermore, expanding the display to view the entire map without physically moving it just by turning your head facilitates a comprehensive view, fulfilling the primary purpose of mind mapping. This approach to creation resonated well with me.


Mind Note, working with a huge screen


Even printing is a seamless process here. Printing extensive text blocks within the mind map is unnecessary, so the virtual keyboard is more than sufficient.


Miro, printing


Drawbacks

However, there are some basic functionalities that have yet to be fully adapted or completed. A notable drawback, from my perspective, is the absence of pinch-to-zoom functionality (both in Miro and Mind Note). This feature seems essential, and its absence is somewhat disappointing; I hope the creators address this in the near future.


Mind Note, zooming


Additionally, there is a cost associated with Mind Note, and without it, the functionality is significantly restricted, rendering the app more of a visual treat than a practical tool.

The Verdict

In my opinion, Vision Pro stands out as an ideal tool for mind mapping. It provides focus, a holistic view, and effortless node manipulation, offering optimal conditions for creative and effective mind mapping. Using Vision Pro exceeds the experience of using a traditional paper or browser version. Despite existing drawbacks, Vision Pro is a promising choice for mind-mapping enthusiasts.

Conclusion

Vision Pro is a powerful tool for creating, designing, and presenting ideas. It allows us to extend our current tools, giving us more space and possibilities. Unfortunately, since Vision Pro has just launched, there isn't a huge selection of apps in the App Store, and some apps are limited in their functionality. However, the speed at which new apps appear and existing ones improve is incredible.


So, I'm sure we'll see plenty of updates in the near future. Let me know what you think in the comments!