Ex-Oculus Exec Dan Morris To Join Lightship AR

Rory Greener

The C-Suite Developer Relations Chief Is Set to Join a Global WebAR Developer Platform

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Ex-Oculus Exec Dan Morris To Join Lightship AR

US augmented reality (AR) software development firm Niantic announced earlier this week it would hire Dan Morris, former Head of Developer Relations at Oculus.

Morris will join Niantic as its new Director of Developer Relations to oversee communications with developers using Niantic’s Lightship augmented reality developer kit (ARDK).

The San Francisco-based firm is designing the Unity-powered Lightship ARDK platform to enable AR developers to create shared immersive multiplayer experiences.

The hiring is beneficial to Niantic as the company aims to move its Lightship ARDK platform from the beta stage to a stable version for developers, live events, and major brands.

Kei Kawai, Niantic’s vice president of product management said,

“With the Niantic Lightship Platform and ARDK, we want to provide the richest selection of development tools and technologies, so any developer can create their own unique experiences”

Niantic’s Lightship ARDK

Niantic’s advanced suite of webAR tools and services is compatible with iPhones and Android devices, allowing cross platform multiplayer experiences of up to eight players.

What makes Niantic Lightship unique is its Meshing software, which facilitates advanced real-time 3D (RT3D) mapping of environments.

The software detects environments without needing device-specific hardware such as the iPhone’s LIDAR scanner, bypassing compatibility issues for developers.

With other webAR developer platforms such as 8th Wall or Poplar Studios competing in markets, Niantic is looking to stand out to advertisers with a flexible and democratised platform.

Niantic achieved this by teaming up with big brands such as Ingress to Pokémon GO to demonstrate the platform’s potential.

But with Dan Morris onboard, more eyes will be placed on Niantic, which could potentially attract more household brands to the company as the beta version platform improves over time.

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