Apple bids farewell to Frank Casanova after pivotal 36-year tenure

Posted:
in Apple Vision Pro

After nearly four decades at Apple, Frank Casanova, the Senior Director of Product Marketing who recently spearheaded the launch of the Vision Pro headset, has retired.

Frank Casanova with glasses and goatee against a blue background.
Apple bids farewell to Frank Casanova after pivotal 36-year tenure



Over his extensive career, Casanova contributed significantly to the company, including his crucial role in expanding the iPhone's carrier network, ultimately shaping how consumers interact with Apple's products worldwide.

Casanova's journey with Apple began in the late '80s, and since then, he has been a pivotal figure in the company's evolution. His early work included marketing Apple's foundational products, according to a Wednesday report by Bloomberg.

In 2019, he was named Apple's first head of marketing for augmented reality, a move that highlighted his adaptability and foresight in embracing new technological frontiers.

The introduction of the Vision Pro marks a significant milestone in Apple's history, representing its ambitious push into the burgeoning field of augmented reality. It launched with an important event at Apple's flagship store in Los Angeles, attended by Casanova alongside Eddy Cue, Apple's Services Chief.

The Apple Vision Pro development cycle highlights the challenges and opportunities in the high-stakes tech market. Casanova's departure is crucial for Apple as it navigates the post-launch phase of its most significant new product category in years.

His retirement turns a new page for the company, calling for a fresh vision to guide the next development phase of its augmented reality initiatives. As Apple says goodbye to Casanova, the industry anticipates what will come next from the company.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 16
    miiwtwomiiwtwo Posts: 46member
    HAHAHA, AVP fail  B)
    9secondkox2neoncatgrandact73
  • Reply 2 of 16
    Hehe- I recognize several go-to phrases written by ChatGPT. Is that now accepted as writing on this site?
    neoncat
  • Reply 3 of 16
    Happy retirement and thank you for your years at Apple.  I still have one of his business cards I got in Dallas at the launch of the Macintosh IIfx, in fact I still have a Macintosh IIfx in my garage.
    edited April 24 Alex1NgregoriusmAniMillmarklarktyler82Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 16
    9secondkox29secondkox2 Posts: 2,797member
    Strange timing for retirement. 

    The VP is not considered a resounding success and is almost a beta-level product. Not the usual Apple standard. 

    With obvious need to follow up and redesign the AR/VR goggles into something more mainstream compatible, why retire now?

    seems more like a “hey buddy, thanks for everything, but it’s time” kind of convo had taken place. 

    I wonder if this is the guy who pushed past Srouji and everyone who knew it wasn’t ready for prime time and got Tim on board. Bet Tim regrets it internally. He’ll never state that publicly, but he’s got to be wishing he had a do-over. 
    grandact73
  • Reply 5 of 16
    Strange timing for retirement. 

    The VP is not considered a resounding success and is almost a beta-level product. Not the usual Apple standard. 

    With obvious need to follow up and redesign the AR/VR goggles into something more mainstream compatible, why retire now?

    seems more like a “hey buddy, thanks for everything, but it’s time” kind of convo had taken place. 

    I wonder if this is the guy who pushed past Srouji and everyone who knew it wasn’t ready for prime time and got Tim on board. Bet Tim regrets it internally. He’ll never state that publicly, but he’s got to be wishing he had a do-over. 
    After working for any company for 36 years you have the right to retire whenever you want and for whatever reason you want to. I am sure Apple knew this was going to happen and has taking every measure to assure a smooth transition.
    Alex1NthtgregoriusmCuJoYYCmuthuk_vanalingamStrangeDays9secondkox2watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 16
    I remember him from the late ‘90s as the QuickTime VR guy in the Advanced Technology Group—with longer, darker hair but still balding. I can recall the QTVR system extension appearing across the bottom of MacOS 8 during boot up. It is amazing that the same concept of freestyle panning in immersive video existed then yet so much lower rez, jerky, jagged, tiny window, and low frame rate. Makes sense he would become a leader with Spatial Computing. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 16
    nubusnubus Posts: 420member
    JamesCude said:
    Hehe- I recognize several go-to phrases written by ChatGPT. Is that now accepted as writing on this site?
    It does indeed feel like ChatGPT created this. Would be nice if AI was transparent on the use of... AI. 

    Casanova was product manager on IIfx marketed as "wicked fast" and then worked on the Quadra. And to those asking "why wasn't there a Mac III" - there was an Apple III and never again. Casanova has seen all of Apple. He worked on global roll-out of iPhone and was probably seen as a success in that position.

    Putting him in charge of ARKit shows how Cook had ARKit as a priority for years. But moving from a product that large corporate partners (telcos) want/need to an API where you need smaller developers or other companies didn't work. ARKit has worked on iPhone 6S and onwards, and the LiDAR scanner of iPhone/iPad Pro is there to help ARKit. Main benefit is probably faster autofocus as users don't demand ARKit apps.

    Without ARKit partners there were no apps or content for AVP. Not enough developers and project teams had the AR experience or focus on AR. And so AVP get a short dino video every 2 months but apps are few. Casanova is absolutely part of that. He should have invested in ARKit apps and built a market. He failed to do so and partners don't need ARKit or AVP as they need iPhone. If any iPhone executive is moved to any other project it indicates "this is high priority" but it also comes at the risk of failure. To get partners on iPhone you just need to pick up your phone. It seems the skills of Casanova didn't go far beyond that.

    This reflects back on those that kept him for 5 years on marketing AR. Phill Schiller and Greg Joswiak should have seen this and fixed it. They didn't and it does put AVP at risk. You can't have a platform without content.
  • Reply 8 of 16
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,921member
    miiwtwo said:
    HAHAHA, AVP fail  B)
    lemme know when you’ve done 36 years of anything 
    Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 16
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,921member
    Strange timing for retirement. 

    The VP is not considered a resounding success and is almost a beta-level product. Not the usual Apple standard. 

    With obvious need to follow up and redesign the AR/VR goggles into something more mainstream compatible, why retire now?

    seems more like a “hey buddy, thanks for everything, but it’s time” kind of convo had taken place. 

    I wonder if this is the guy who pushed past Srouji and everyone who knew it wasn’t ready for prime time and got Tim on board. Bet Tim regrets it internally. He’ll never state that publicly, but he’s got to be wishing he had a do-over. 
    AVP is hardly a “beta”. It’s a gen 1 device, but extremely impressive. That there aren’t a lot of apps or touted use cases isn’t because it’s a so-called beta, but because it is new.  
    coolfactorAlex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 16
    sevenfeetsevenfeet Posts: 467member
    I got a chance to meet Frank back in the late 80s when both of us had begun our careers at Apple. I didn't stay but he was definitely a survivor. I hope he enjoys retirement.
    Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 16
    JamesCude said:
    Hehe- I recognize several go-to phrases written by ChatGPT. Is that now accepted as writing on this site?
    Let's hope not. I get using ChatGPT to come up with ideas, but when a website's purpose is reporting, it seems like writing the story is a pretty central part of that. On a similar note, AllSides (news aggregator) has been adding a note to the bottom of some of their summaries saying they were "created in part with AI technology"... I appreciate the transparency, but come on. Having AI perform the work that is the central value proposition of your website is just a bad look. (Not saying AppleInsider is necessarily doing that.. but I hope they don't.)
    ApplejacsAlex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 16
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 2,259member
    miiwtwo said:
    HAHAHA, AVP fail  B)

    When the Vision platform is a rounding success, will you admit that you were wrong? Genuine question.

    Apple knows that the Vision project is going to take time to mature. It's foolish to think they'd have a smash hit on the very first release with such complex and ground-breaking technology. Way beyond music players and cell phones.

    edited April 25 Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 16
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 2,259member

    Strange timing for retirement. 

    The VP is not considered a resounding success and is almost a beta-level product. Not the usual Apple standard. 

    With obvious need to follow up and redesign the AR/VR goggles into something more mainstream compatible, why retire now?

    seems more like a “hey buddy, thanks for everything, but it’s time” kind of convo had taken place. 

    I wonder if this is the guy who pushed past Srouji and everyone who knew it wasn’t ready for prime time and got Tim on board. Bet Tim regrets it internally. He’ll never state that publicly, but he’s got to be wishing he had a do-over. 

    @StrangeDays gave an excellent response. Don't believe the media anti-hype. Apple deliberately released this device into the wild when they did for a very strategic reason. WWDC coming soon, followed by the Fall updates. The best is yet to come.

    Alex_Vwatto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 16
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 1,105member
    rhbellmor said:
    Happy retirement and thank you for your years at Apple.  I still have one of his business cards I got in Dallas at the launch of the Macintosh IIfx, in fact I still have a Macintosh IIfx in my garage.
    Love the TAM just hanging out  B)
    thtwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 16
    Remember seeing him walking around the MacWorld conference in NYC- maybe the one and only show there? . He was involved with  QuickTime from what I can remember. Had that rock star hair down to his shoulders. Oh, how I wish I looked that cool and worked at Apple during the glory years.  
    Remember listening to Sinbad talk somewhere in the Apple booth area ( off the side ) as it was closing time to a small bunch of people. I had a rolling cart that had all my promo lit including all those fun give away, tee shirts, etc. Those were the days!
  • Reply 16 of 16
    Not sure if that story is completely true about Casanova. But apparently he actually got fired several times by Apple in the 90's (you know when Apple was a complete mess) ... only for Apple to call him back almost immediately pleading him to come back into the fold. His answer: "I like fast cars ;-)" ... at the time according to the  Apple colleague, Casanova supposedly had 4 of those in his garage.
    Again not sure if it's true.
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