Apple Pushes Into AR/VR with Painting App Developer Hire
The growing augmented reality/virtual reality segment just grew a little hotter July 30th as the Cupertino-based electronics giant Apple announced it was hiring the painting VR app developer Sterling Crispin, whose company of the same name launched “Cyber Paint” one of the first games to really make full use of the opportunities that virtual reality offers developers to gamify concepts and an execution has so well done that Apple couldn’t help but add Crispin to their team.
This is part of an ongoing effort at Apple to build out its own virtual reality headset, codenamed T288. Developed using the rOS operating system, Apple’s device promises to have multiple applications in entertainment, commerce, and industry which is part of the reason the company was probably so intrigued by Sterling Crispin’s work with augmented reality.
While virtual reality is well known to gamers and has been for some time, augmented reality (think Pokemon Go) also offers real game-changing applications for a range of industries from transportation to education. Imagine a world in which putting on a headset allows you to look at an object and gives you the ability to access reams of data on it. This is the promise of augmented reality.
The main difference between the two is that virtual reality is a whole new space while augmented reality places virtual objects on top of the actual space you view in front of you.
You can see how an AR app that provides directions using pop up signs works similar to a video game that does the same thing. It is this organic representation of digital data that most intrigues companies like Apple because the sky is really the limit when it comes to superimpose images on the real world.
Of course, the rumors surrounding Apple’s VR effort make it sound like something out of a Star Wars movie.
With Siri voice integration, standalone processing power, and 8K eyepieces with a “computing unit that connects wirelessly via WiGig” according to Apple Insider, the rumored VR tech sounds potent indeed. While Google, Facebook, and Sony have been very public with their virtual reality technology development, Apple has remained relatively mum on the niche.
Some analysts speculate this is because when the company goes it goes hard but others point to the relatively unproven profitability of the VR/AR niche – at this point – as reasons that Apple might be dragging its feet.
After all, you don’t become the world’s first trillion dollar corporation by making a slew of bad business deals and we’re sure the addition of Sterling Crispin to Apple’s already-strong development team will only pay dividends for the company in the end. It isn’t terribly hard to imagine that Apple does have its sights set on taking over AR and VR in its own way but how that happens remains to be seen. Perhaps a full-on dedicated device or simply technology that integrates with a currently existing kit, Apple’s plans for AR and VR will only help expand the field even further into the mainstream consciousness and that’s a great thing at the end of the day.