- Apple has purchased a little-known artificial-intelligence company for a reported $200 million.
- According to GeekWire, the acquired company, Xnor.ai, is a Seattle-based startup that specializes in low-power, edge-based artificial-intelligence tools.
- Apple recently acquired a similar startup called Spectral Edge, a British startup that used machine learning to dramatically enhance the quality of photos that could be taken on the iPhone camera.
- Business Insider has approached Apple and Xnor.ai for comment.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Apple just can’t get enough of AI startups, it seems.
The tech giant has reportedly purchased a little-known artificial-intelligence company for about $200 million. According to GeekWire, the acquired company is a Seattle-based startup called Xnor.ai, which specializes in low-power, edge-based artificial-intelligence tools.
Bloomberg confirmed the acquisition with Apple, which did not confirm the price. Apple and Xnor.ai did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Business Insider.
Despite its acquisition by Apple, Xnor.ai owes its existence to Microsoft – sort of. That’s because it’s an alumnus of AI2, an incubator for AI startups funded by the Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen’s Institute for Artificial Intelligence.
Though it’s not yet clear exactly how Xnor.ai’s products will be used by Apple, the startup is also thought to specialize in image-recognition software.
Apple’s purchases of Xnor.ai as well as Turi form part of a wider recent tendency on its part toward buying small AI firms.
Last month, it acquired the British AI firm Spectral Edge, a Cambridge-based firm that combines image-fusion technology with machine learning to dramatically enhance the quality of iPhone photos.
In May, Apple CEO Tim Cook said the tech giant acquired a company “on average, every two to three weeks,” with the company “primarily looking for talent and intellectual property” when making these purchases.