Apple hires Arthur van Hoff, founder of VR startup Jaunt

in Future Apple Hardware edited April 9
Apple has recruited Arthur van Hoff, the founder of virtual reality outfit Jaunt, likely with an expected augmented reality headset in mind.

Jaunt VR

Van Hoff is just one of multiple former Jaunt engineers Apple has hired in recent years, Variety said. He may however be the most prominent, having served most of his time as the company's CTO and even briefly taking over the CEO position in 2016. Prior to that he held CTO jobs at Flipboard and Dell.

Jaunt is known for developing a high-end VR capture camera and creating its own distribution platform. In 2016 it reaped some $65 million in funding, including from long-time Apple partner Disney.

The company has a number of short VR films on its website, and also put out a now-defunct iOS app.

The company has run into trouble in recent months, particularly in October, when it engaged in mass layoffs and refocused on mixed/augmented reality capture.

Van Hoff's LinkedIn profile currently lists him as a "senior architect" at Apple, operating out of Menlo Park, Calif.

While he could be exploring general work in AR and VR, or even helping on simulation tools for self-driving cars, the company is widely reported to be working on an AR headset that could ship as soon as 2020. The first-generation model may be dependent on a paired iPhone for most processing, and it's not yet clear whether it will be wireless or cable-bound. Apple is typically eager to strip all external ports and cables from its products, yet AR can impose tough bandwidth demands on anything but the fastest connections.


  • Reply 1 of 6
    FredoFredo Posts: 3member
    Wi-Fi 6, 802.11ax, on new iPhones AND the AR-Headset should be fast enough. There should then be no need for a cable!
    edited April 9 cornchip
  • Reply 2 of 6
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 576member
    Points to the first person at Apple to call him "The Hoff". LOL
    edited April 9 cornchip
  • Reply 3 of 6
    He could be working on Apple News+ or developing AR/VR video content for Apple TV+. 
  • Reply 4 of 6
    Fredo said:
    Wi-Fi 6, 802.11ax, on new iPhones AND the AR-Headset should be fast enough. There should then be no need for a cable!
    You are off by an order of magnitude, at least. And if it's a high-end headset, even a 2019 iphone won't be able to drive it well. Look at what it takes to do good VR right now on other headsets (bandwidth and GPU), and think of how much better Apple's going to want theirs to be.

    The wildcard, of course, is some sort of breakthrough predictive/compression algorithm to wildly reduce bandwidth needs. That would be close to science fiction, and is highly unlikely. Even if you got it, you might need too much processing power in the headset. We'll see in a year or so, I guess.
  • Reply 5 of 6
    Wow. did not expect him to join Apple. Big news in my book, this is an extremely seasoned developer.
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