Creating 3D app launchers

This feature is currently limited to developers with Microsoft account managers. It will be available to all developers when the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update becomes publicly available

The Windows Mixed Reality home is the starting point where users land before launching applications. When creating an application for Windows Mixed Reality, by default apps are launched as 2D slates with their app's logo. When developing experiences for Windows Mixed Reality immersive headsets, a 3D launcher can optionally be defined3 to override the default 2D launcher for your application. In general, 3D launchers are recommended for launching exclusive applications that take users out of the Windows Mixed Reality home whereas the default 2D launcher is preferred when the app is activated in place.

Note: 3D app launchers are not currently available for use on HoloLens.

HoloTour 3D Launcher in the Cliff House environment

Configuring the 3D launcher

When you create a new project in Visual Studio, it creates a simple default tile that displays your app's name and logo. To replace this 2D representation with a custom 3D model edit the app manifest of your application to include the “MixedRealityModel” element as part of your default tile definition. To revert to the 2D launcher just remove the MixedRealityModel definition from the manifest.


First, at the top of the app manifest add the uap5 schema and include it as an ignorable namespace:

<Package xmlns:mp="" 
         IgnorableNamespaces="uap uap2 uap5 mp"

Next specify the "MixedRealityModel" in the default tile for your application:

    <Application Id="App"
        <uap:DefaultTile Wide310x150Logo="Assets\WideLogo.png" >
          <uap5:MixedRealityModel Path=“Assets\My3DTile.glb” />
        <uap:SplashScreen Image="Assets\SplashScreen.png" />

The MixedRealityModel elements accepts a file path pointing to a 3D asset stored in your app package. Currently only 3D models delivered using the .glb file format and authored against the Windows Mixed Reality 3D asset authoring instructions are supported. Assets must be stored in the app package and animation is not currently supported. If the “Path” parameter is left blank Windows will show the 2D slate instead of the 3D launcher.

Using Unity

When working with Unity the project must be built and opened in Visual Studio before the App Manifest can be edited. Note: The 3D launcher must be redefined in the manifest when building and deploying a new Visual Studio solution from Unity.

Creating 3D app launcher assets

3D assets to be used as launchers for your application must be authored using the Windows Mixed Reality authoring guidelines to ensure compatibility. Assets that fail to meet this authoring specification will not render successfully in the Windows Mixed Reality home.

See also