Apple hires top virtual & augmented reality researcher Doug Bowman

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Apple hires top virtual & augmented reality researcher Doug Bowman

With names like Samsung, Sony, Oculus (owned by Facebook), Microsoft, and HTC getting involved in virtual or augmented reality, it seems like it should only be a matter of time before Apple dips its toes in that water. Bowman has been director of Virginia Tech's Center for Human-Computer Interaction for the past five years.

Apple's yet to enter the VR (virtual reality) market, but with a number of its rivals exploring the sector it would be no surprise if the Cupertino firm stepped into the arena - and a recent hire suggests it's already making movements.

Notably, a year ago Bowman was the recipient of a $100,000 (£70,000) research grant from Microsoft for using its HoloLens headset for a study on "collaborative analysis of large-scale mixed reality data".

He will have crossed Apple's path through working with Disney Imagineering. The short answer is "no one knows". He also collaborated on numerous articles, including "Virtual Reality: How Much Immersion Is Enough?"

Apple will become "very aggressive on the virtual/augmented reality front through organic as well as acquisitive means in 2016 as this represents a natural next-generation consumer technology that plays well into its unrivaled iPhone ecosystem", FBR & Co analyst Daniel Ives said in an earlier report.

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