Upload exec tasked with turning things around at the troubled VR startup has already quit

 The executive tasked with building back community trust in Upload, the VR startup shaken by a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a former employee earlier this summer, has quit less than six weeks after officially announcing she had joined the team as COO, multiple sources tell TechCrunch. Anne Aloha Ward joined as COO of Upload, which runs co-working spaces in its LA and SF offices as well as… Read More

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AR mystery startup Magic Leap looking to raise as much as $1B in new round

 Magic Leap may be raising as much as $1 billion to fund their vision of a future filled with augmented reality glasses. A Delaware filing dated Wednesday was provided to us by CB Insights, confirming that the secretive startup has authorized about $1 billion in new funding.  The filing authorizes over 37 million shares of Series D preferred stock at $27 per share. No details on investors yet.… Read More

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Games account for over half of the 3M+ ARKit-powered app downloads, 62% of revenue

 ARKit, Apple’s augmented reality framework that CEO Tim Cook recently likened to being as “dramatic” a development as the App Store itself, has now been installed over 3 million times worldwide through a host of ARKit-powered apps and games, according to a new report out today from Sensor Tower. The app store intelligence firm also examined the most popular ARKit apps, and… Read More

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Don’t trust investors asking how you’ll exit to Apple, says Apple CEO

 If you’re a budding entrepreneur and the VC you’re pitching switches gears and asks you about your exit strategy that’s your cue to get up and leave, says Apple CEO Tim Cook. Read More

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Snapchat is building a secluded R&D lab in Lehi, Utah

 It’s hard to build something secret in LA or SF without anyone finding out. So Snap Inc is building a new R&D office in the remote location of Lehi, Utah — 30 miles south of Salt Lake City. The distance from Facebook and other tech companies could allow Snapchat to develop new app features or hardware devices beyond the prying eyes and ears of its competitors. Meanwhile, Snap… Read More

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Upskill Skylight update aimed at bringing augmented reality to mainstream

 Upskill wants to be the development platform for your smart glasses, regardless of the brand. This agnostic approach is fairly unusual for companies building augmented reality applications and it provides enterprises with a neutral way to build these applications to work across different smart glasses systems. Company CEO Brian Ballard says the hardware is beginning to mature, but… Read More

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Jeff Koons’ augmented reality Snapchat artwork gets ‘vandalized’

 Earlier this week, Snapchat launched a new augmented reality art exhibiting feature as part of a collaboration with the artist Jeff Koons. ART, as it’s called, will plaster the digital artwork and sculptures of artists into geo-tagged physical locations across the world that viewers can see as a Lens inside the Snapchat app. There has already been a backlash by some in the artistic… Read More

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Trying out Google’s ‘Stranger Things’ AR stickers on the new Pixel 2

 Google has new AR stickers coming to its Pixel devices, with rollout set to begin later this year. They use Google’s ARCore, which is designed as a easy way for Android developers to bring augmented reality experiences to device users. The AR stickers are built right into the camera app on the Pixel (when they make their way out via software update) and they can be selected like any… Read More

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Hands-on with Snapchat’s mediocre, crashy AR art

 After trekking out to the middle of Central Park to see Snapchat’s newest AR feature, I can solidly say that the best part of the experience was getting to spend some time outside during a beautiful fall day. Yeah, it was that lame. As background, yesterday Snapchat posted a mysterious countdown timer on a domain named art.snapchat.com that was reminiscent of the countdown timers… Read More

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Amazon has acquired 3D body model startup, Body Labs, for $50M-$70M

 TechCrunch has learned that Amazon has acquired Body Labs, a company with a stated aim of creating true-to-life 3D body models to support various b2b software applications — such as virtually trying on clothes or photorealistic avatars for gaming. Read More

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Topology lets you try before you buy glasses using AR in an app

 Topology Eyewear is an augmented reality app providing custom-fit glasses from a 3D scan of your face. Most glasses are mass manufactured to fit a supposedly symmetric head. The problem is, most of us are not that symmetrical. The Topology app, available on iOS, uses face-scanning technology to take into account facial factors that can make most glasses not fit as well as they should. Read More

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