Edward Loveall

Apple's Watch Series 3 Webpage

Have you seen the new Apple Watch Series 3 page? It’s incredible. Whether you care about the device itself, it’s a pretty amazing feat of web development.

If you have some kind of smooth scrolling device like a trackpad or your phone, look at the swimmer/bubbles while you scroll around. It looks like a whole 3D scene is set up with depth and lighting.

In fact, I’m pretty sure that’s what’s Apple created.

Poking around in their source code, we can see a few things.


three.js is a javascript library for creating and rendering interactive 3D scenes on the web. It’s great. Apple has used it in the past for things like its High Sierra page. It is also included in this Apple Watch page.

3D Assets

Included or downloaded with the page are a few different assets:

glTF: A format for storing models and 3D scenes in a JSON-like format. An example would be Swimmer.gltf.

Collada: This seems to be pretty similar to gltf but XML instead of JSON? I’m not sure, but I know you can download it and actually view it on a macOS natively. Download Swimmer.dae and open it in Preview.app on a Mac.

Binary files: There are also some binary files that I imagine hold color or image data. I can’t figure out how to read them though: Swimmer.bin.

With three.js and all these 3D asset files, it seems pretty clear that Apple is setting up a 3D scene, and moving a virtual camera around when you scroll. You can see that they’re setting up a perspective camera by searching for camera in this obfuscated Javascript file.

The folks working on the web team at Apple is doing are doing a hell of a job.