Apple names senior exec to promote its augmented reality initiatives

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There are plenty of AR apps but few people have heard of them. An Apple veteran has been tasked with changing that.
Frank Casanova is Apple's new AR boss.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s augmented reality efforts have a new spokesperson. Frank Casanova has been named head of marketing for Apple’s AR offerings.

Apple has been hard at work in this area for years, but its developer tools and the resulting AR apps haven’t attracted significant attention. Perhaps that’s why there’s a new senior director in charge of promoting them.

Lego Ninjago AR app brings toys to virtual life

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Lego Ninjago AR brings playsets to life in a mixed reality in game.
Lego Ninjago AR brings playsets to life in a mixed reality in game.
Photo: Lego

At Apple’s developer conference in June, Lego demonstrated an app built with ARkit that placed real Lego sets in virtual environments. The first version of that software just launched today.

Lego Ninjago AR lets players interact with certain Dragon Hunters sets. And two people can play together thanks to the multi-player capabilities added in ARkit 2.

Speed through the WWDC 2018 keynote with sketchnotes

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Apple WWDC 2018 keynote in sketchnotes, Part 1 of 4.
Sketchnotes deliver all the WWDC 2018 keynote highlights the easy, visual way.
Photo: Andy McNally/Cult of Mac

WWDC 2018 bug Cult of Mac It is always exciting to capture the WWDC keynote in sketchnotes, and this year I filled up four pages of my notebook with drawings showcasing the biggest new features coming in iOS 12, macOS Mojave and watchOS 5.

As seen in my first sketchnote, above, iOS 12 makes performance on both old and new devices a priority. ARKit 2 brings more augmented reality goodness to Apple devices, including the ability for up to four people to share the same AR space at the same time.

For a quick and easy recap of the rest of the WWDC 2018 keynote highlights — plus a bonus sketchnote that proved kind of prescient — check out the rest below.

Don’t expect new Macs, iPads, or Apple Watch at WWDC

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WWDC 2019
Apple CEO Tim Cook on stage for WWDC 2018.
Photo: Apple

Apple still has a bunch of new devices up its sleeve for 2018 — not including the new iPhone lineup — but we won’t see any of it at WWDC.

A new report claims we can expect refreshed MacBook and MacBook Pro models, a more affordable machine to replace the MacBook Air, a new iPad Pro with Face ID, and a new Apple Watch. However, we’ll have to wait until later in the year to get our hands on them.