Apple reportedly in talks to acquire Israeli firm behind original Kinect

By on July 16, 2013, 10:15 AM
apple, rumor, kinect, primesense, motion control, israeli, motion sensing

Apple is in talks to acquire the Israeli firm behind Microsoft’s original Kinect sensor technology, according to local newspaper Calcalist. The report claims a delegation of PrimeSense senior executives visited Apple’s engineering offices in recent days, and though the deal is apparently still in its early stages, Apple has already offered to pay somewhere in the range of $280 to $300 million for the fabless semiconductor company.

Apple has expressed interest in motion sensing and control in the past, having acquired several patents and licensing a few others. Acquiring PrimeSense’s technology and IP would be another step in that direction, and could bolster Apple’s offerings in the living room -- whether that involves the Apple TV or the long-rumored iTV.

Besides Kinect, PrimeSense also collaborated with Asus on the 3D sensing technology for its WAVI Xtion PC, and it has also worked with companies in retail, robotics, mobile computing and healthcare industries. In all, the company’s 3D scanning technology is used in more than 20 million devices around the world.

It wouldn’t be the first time Apple and PrimeSense discuss a potential deal, either. Back in 2010 news surfaced that before approaching Microsoft, PrimeSense pitched it’s motion sensing technology to Apple. The company felt it was a natural fit for Cupertino, but ultimately negotiations broke down due to Apple’s insistence on secrecy, contractual demands, legal agreements, NDAs and essentially being “a pain in the ass” to deal with.

Neither company has officially commented on the rumours -- nor we expect them to. While not denying the meetings outright, a source at PrimeSense speaking with TechCrunch described the report at “BS” based on unverified and twisted hints, suggesting that the company is worth several times more than $280 million.




User Comments: 4

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gamoniac said:

And more patent lawsuits on the way... Maybe I am just I being too pessimistic about the state of the patent fiasco.

1 person liked this | trparky said:

No, you're right. This just means more lawsuits. I figure that Microsoft is going to be ending up sued by Apple eventually since the Kinect from the XBOX 360 is going to be covered under the patents that Apple will be acquiring as part of the purchase. If that happens I hope that Microsoft will end up giving them a taste of what Apple deserves.

I can't believe that I'm rooting for Microsoft here.

BlueDrake said:

No, you're right. This just means more lawsuits. I figure that Microsoft is going to be ending up sued by Apple eventually since the Kinect from the XBOX 360 is going to be covered under the patents that Apple will be acquiring as part of the purchase. If that happens I hope that Microsoft will end up giving them a taste of what Apple deserves.

I can't believe that I'm rooting for Microsoft here.

We all can't believe the day, we're actually cheering for Microsoft. Mostly due to all the issues everyone's had, in one way or another with the company. Just I don't see why we shouldn't, when Apple is just looking to screw others. Or at least ask for royalties because of what they would then own in patents, so it's a possible grim day for Microsoft if they do actually aquire the company.

1 person liked this | Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

The deal fell flat before, it'll probably fall flat again due to Apple being "a pain in the ass" to deal with. Apples never gonna change until it's too late.

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