Uber Going the Virtual Reality Route?

The technology division of Uber, the Advanced Technology Group, just made some waves by bringing on former head of product development at Facebook’s Oculus Rift division.  Jon Thomason will now be in charge of all of Uber’s Advanced Technology Group’s software teams and autonomous driving and trucking units that are based in Toronto, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh.

Thomason comes with a healthy dose of cutting-edge experience. He was the head of the Mobile Shopping team at Amazon, vice president and engineer at Qualcomm, and was with Oculus from 2016 where he led the mobile virtual reality business. He also oversaw Microsoft’s launch software for its Xbox and Xbox Live gaming systems.  Basically, Uber has invested in someone who knows how to build appealing software and, more importantly, knows how to deploy it. Uber desperately needs someone of Thomason’s caliber right now as the company looks for a win in a wide range of platforms including deep learning, machine vision, safety and security systems and a number of other initiatives.