The list of senior executives who have left HTC to peruse other career opportunities just got a little longer. Jeff Gattis, director of global marketing for HTC’s Connected Devices division, has taken a new position at Magic Leap as head of product marketing. During his short stint at HTC, Gattis oversaw the final details of the HTC RE launch and was responsible for HTC’s global marketing efforts around the HTC RE, HTC Vive and the HTC Grip (which never actually launched). Under the marketing direction of Jeff Gattis, HTC was hoping its Connected Devices category would expand the company’s reach and allow for broader growth opportunities that were not tied specifically to smartphones and tablets.
As you may know, Magic Leap is a Google-backed VR startup that managed to raise more than $500 million last year alone. Magic Leap is still in its development phase and most of the details of the project are still secret. In an interview with UploadVR, Jeff does give a little insight as to what Magic Leap hopes to accomplish without giving away any clue as to what the hardware is or how the technology actually works.
“(Magic Leap) is actually going to impact lives and it’s something that we could have with us all the time as we move throughout the world. They talk about replacing screens. This is just from a business standpoint, we’re talking about a huge potential market, and then the application scenarios under that are almost infinite.
Again, I’m just talking about the breadth of the potential for Magic Leap. That’s what excites me. It’s not just about creating a great gaming device, but actually doing something that could potentially change the world.”
The only reference for what Magic Leap’s virtual/augmented reality will be like comes from a demo video that was released by Magic Leap last month. The disclosure in the video would have you assume that what’s shown is exactly what someone would experience while using Motion Leap.
Video disclosure: “Shot directly through Magic Leap technology on October 14, 2015. No special effects or compositing were used in the creation of these videos. ”
It’s disappointing to see yet another top-level executive say goodbye to HTC. We’re sure HTC will survive Jeff Gattis’ departure, but we’re hoping that this doesn’t have an impact on HTC’s plans to launch the Vive before the end of the year.