Apple Inc has bough Hyderabad-based machine learning startup Tuplejump for an undisclosed amount, reports Bloomberg. Apple has likely bought the company to boost its expertise in Artificial intelligence. Tuplejump specializes in software which can process large sets of data very quickly.
The deal is perhaps an acqui-hire. Tuplejump’s website currently cannot be reached and a Google search shows that the business is permanently closed. Rohit Rai the company’s co-founder’s LinkedIn profile shows that he currently employed at Apple in Seattle and move there in May 2016.
In October last year, Apple had acquired machine-learning firm Perceptio, a startup that worked on advance image-recognition capabilities using artificial intelligence, especially on smartphones. This later yielded in iOS 10 image-recognition feature, which we highlighted earlier. Last month, Apple introduced a new facial recognition engine within iOS. It lets users identify friends and family members in photos. iOS can now detect objects, scenery, mountains, water, locations, etc, and users for example can search for “Pics taken near mountains”.
Siri opened up to third party apps
In June, Apple opened up Siri, its AI virtual assistant, to third party developers. Right now, Siri can book taxis through voice commands. It also can also send messages through third party apps, look up photos taken during a time frame, send money, make video calls and keep track of workouts.
Other tech companies acquisitions
In recent times, Google, Facebook and Twitter have been acquiring startups specializing in machine learning and artificial intelligence.
– In July, Google acquired French machine learning startup Moodstocks for an undisclosed amount. Following the acquisition, the entire team of Moodstocks joined Google’s R&D facility at Paris to help strengthen visual recognition capability in Google’s image or video based products.
– Twitter had acquired London-based Magic Pony to enhance its machine learning capabilities in image processing; this was Twitter’s third acquisition in a machine learning company.
– In January 2015, Facebook had acquired Wit.AI, a San Francisco-based startup that developed a speech-recognition platform for different devices and offering it through APIs. This later powered Facebook’s machine learning capabilities for text-translation on its social media website; earlier Facebook depended on Bing for text-translation, but ditched it after acquiring Wit.AI.