Apple confirmed on Monday evening that it has acquired artificial intelligence startup Perceptio. While the terms of the deal were not disclosed, the company did issue a statement to Bloomberg, saying, “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.”
Perceptio, which does not have a website, was founded by Nicolas Pinto and Zak Stone, two researchers with backgrounds in artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Prior to being acquired, the company was working on software that would allow smartphones to classify images without relying on large swaths of reference data. According to Bloomberg, Perceptio’s software relied on a technique called deep learning, an approach to artificial intelligence that allows computer to teach itself a concept. Deep learning has been gaining popularity with a variety of tech companies. In 2014, Google paid more than $400-million to acquire DeepMind, one of the leaders in the field.
It’s unclear how Apple plans to integrate Perceptio software into future versions of iOS, though it fits in nicely with Apple’s self-proclaimed desire to allow users to keep their data.
This is the second AI-focused startup Apple has purchased in the span of four days. Last week, the company bought a startup out of the United Kingdom that was working on making personal assistants like Siri better at holding a conversation.
[source] Bloomberg [/source]