Apple Makes Big Purchase for 3D Tech

Source: PrimeSense.comApple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has confirmed its acquisition of the Israel-based motion-sensing technology company PrimeSense after months of speculation. Apple spokesperson Kristin Huguet confirmed the purchase with the tech company’s standard prepared statement. “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans,” said Huguet via All Things D.

PrimeSense also confirmed the deal in a statement issued to The Verge. “We can confirm the deal with Apple. Further than that, we cannot comment at this stage,” said an unnamed PrimeSense spokesperson. The acquisition was finalized after the market closed on Friday and was first reported by Globes on Sunday. According to All Things D’s insider sources, Apple paid approximately $360 million for PrimeSense.

This is slightly higher than the $345 million figure that was reported last week by financial newspaper Calcalist via Reuters. Rumors of Apple’s interest in the company first emerged in July of this year when Calcalist reported that Apple bought PrimeSense for $280 million after a delegation of executives visited the company.

PrimeSense’s 3D vision and gesture technology is used in Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Xbox 360 Kinect system and allows the device to distinguishes users with its face-recognition capabilities, as well as interpret their gestures. As stated on the company’s website, the technology “translates these observations into a synchronized image stream (depth and color) — just like humans do. It then takes those synchronized images and translates them into information.”

However, as noted by The Verge, Microsoft did not use PrimeSense’s technology for the latest Kinect sensor that is paired with the new Xbox One. According to PrimeSense’s website, its technology is in “over 20 million households worldwide.”

Many industry watchers believe that Apple will incorporate motion-sensing control functions into the long-rumored Apple television set. Market research firm DisplaySearch recently reported that Apple is developing multiple sizes of a 4K resolution television that will be released in the second half of 2014. The California-based company’s recent acquisition of PrimeSense is likely to further boost the rumors of a so-called “iTV.” PrimeSense is the second Israeli tech company that Apple has purchased. According to Reuters, the iPhone maker acquired flash storage chip manufacturer Anobit early last year. Here’s how Apple closed on Friday.

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