Will Apple go after the Kinect technology?

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Calcalist, an Israeli newspaper, has claimed that Apple has finalized the purchase of PrimeSense, an Israeli fabless semiconductor firm, for 345 million dollars. The Cupertino-based technology company has not confirmed the report made by the Israeli media, but several sources claim that the deal is not done yet, and that the official acquisition will be in the following one or two weeks.

In a statement reported to The Verge, a PrimeSense spokesperson said that the firm is not commenting on the rumors or on what is happening with any of their partners, customers or potential clients. She pointed out that the technology firm is focused on building a prosperous company while bringing Natural Interaction and 3D sensing to the mass market in a wide range of markets.

Who’s  PrimeSense?                                                                                                        

PrimeSense is a Tel Aviv based enterprise which provides products related to the creation of 3D sensory inputs and 3D scanning technology for commercial markets and consumers. It is well-known for being behind the motion tracking mechanism in Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Kinect sensor in 2010; however, the latter decided to build its latest Xbox One sensor without any further help from PrimeSense. Therefore, the Israel fabless semiconductor firm decided to focus on robotics, retail, interactive displays, and healthcare industries, as well as living room and gaming technology. In 2011, the Israeli Company was chosen by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Technology Review magazine as one of the world’s 50 most creative and innovative company. That same year, it was acknowledged in EE Times Annual Creativity in Electronics (ACE) as the Design Team of the Year. Nowadays, PrimeSense has offices in Israel, Japan, China, Korea, Taiwan, and North America.

 Why PrimeSense?

Considering the current technology trends, it is quite obvious why Apple might be interesting on acquiring the Israeli fabless semiconductor firm. Primesenses’s 3D sensory inputs and 3D scanning technology are currently used in more than 20 million devices across the world; these include sensors that can be embedded in tablets and smartphones. Considering the constant rumors about Apple TV launch and the recent reports implying that it is now planned for 2015, it appears to be possible that the role of the Israeli firm will have something to do with the development of Apple’s living room or a new upgrade or product related to tablet or smartphone devices.

The Cupertino-based technology giant has done these kind deals before and has purchased companies to integrate their technologies into their own products right away. For instance, the iPhone maker bought last year Authentec, a security hardware firm, before shipping its more recent iPhone 5S handset with fingerprint sensor last September. It is not a surprise the company is now after the 3D sensory input and 3D scanning technology.

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Laura Gomez

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