Apple confirms acquisition of AR tech company

Apple confirms acquisition of AR tech company

Apple confirms acquisition of AR tech company

Apple may have purchased an eye tracking technology company called SensoMotoric Instruments, MacRumors believes.

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In May, Apple gave a German law firm power of attorney to represent an Apple-related shell company in all business related to the acquisition of SensoMotoric Instruments. And to be honest, judging by what Apple unveiled at the WWDC 2017, and more specifically the new ARKit, it seems like the company is indeed on track to cause a big splash in the AR pond in the months to come. Among other systems, SMI has developed glasses with built-in eye-tracking sensors. According to the report, the company had actually been hiring until last week. Moreover, since the technology is created to enhance resolution only in the area where a user's gaze is detected, the other portions of the display are blurred, which in turn reduces demand for power on the headset's CPU and components. To that end, when reached for further comment on the SMI deal, an Apple spokesperson reiterated the classic "Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our goal or plans" line. The price Apple paid for the reportedly 60-person company is unknown. Apple's quest for secrecy runs even deeper than that-as with other smaller acquisitions it has made in the past, Apple tried to hide this one through shell companies, which MacRumors traced back to the outfit. Apple CEO Tim Cook has long hyped the appeal of AR technology while iOS 11 introduces new ARKit tools for developers to use in iPhone and iPad apps. The company also brought VR development support to the company's highest-end desktop, the iMac Pro. This is the first time it has added VR support to any of its devices. SMI has developed both hardware and software in the field of eye-tracking, and has created its own Eye Tracking Glasses. This decreases process load and VR can therefore be run using more performance efficient metrics.

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