China’s Tencent throws its massive weight behind Vision Pro


China's Tencent throws its massive weight behind Vision Pro
Tencent support is a serious boost for Apple's Vision Pro AR headset in China
Photo: Apple/Tencent/Cult of Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook’s trip to China apparently scored a big win: Tencent will reportedly bring some of its biggest apps to the Vision Pro AR headset. The company developed both the hugely popular WeChat super app plus a wide array of successful games.

Vision Pro has not yet launched in China but the debut is expected soon.

Tencent sees the advantages of Apple Vision Pro

Released in the U.S. in February, the AR headset is Apple’s first foray into what the company calls “spatial computing.” Vision Pro focuses on augmented reality, which overlays computer-generated content onto the real world. While its bleeding-edge technology draws praise, the $3,500 price remains a drawback.

To be successful, Vision Pro needs third-party software. So it’s very good news for Apple that one of the biggest app developers in the world is onboard.

“Tencent, China’s largest social media, streaming and gaming company, has agreed to make some of its most important apps available on the device,” The Information reported on Tuesday. “Without Tencent’s contribution, Apple would have faced a greater challenge in marketing the Vision Pro in China.”

There has not been an announcement of this agreement between Tencent and Apple, though. The article cites only an unnamed “person with direct knowledge of the decision” as its source.

Apple and Vision Pro need China

Apple CEO Tim Cook just took a goodwill tour of China during which he attended the opening of the “one-of-a-kind” Apple Jing’An store in Shanghai. But obviously there was more on the executive’s agenda than glad-handing customers.

This is Cook’s third visit to China in less than a year, a sign of how important the country is to the iPhone-maker. In the final quarter of last year, 17% of Apple’s total revenue came from Greater China. Its handsets took the top spot in the country for the first time in 2023, but have reportedly slumped in 2024.

While Vision Pro is not yet available in China, rentals of the device are allegedly hot, hot, hot. But to win actual buyers, the headset will need the apps Chinese users prefer. And Tencent can be a huge help in achieving that.


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