Samsung buying Viv, the AI assistant developed by Siri creators

By Cody Lee on Oct 5, 2016

Samsung has agreed to acquire Viv, the next-gen AI assistant that was developed by Siri co-founders Dag Kittlaus and Adam Cheyer. TechCrunch reports that it will continue to operate as an independent company, providing services to Samsung and its platforms.

Viv made numerous headlines earlier this year, when the team demonstrated the power of its assistant. In one scenario, it was able to successfully order a pizza over the Internet customized with toppings from several employees with a few simple voice commands. Read More


Spotify said to be in advanced talks to buy SoundCloud

By Cody Lee on Sep 28, 2016

Spotify is in advanced talks to acquire SoundCloud, reports the Financial Times. The streaming music service believes the buyout could help it better compete with competitors like Apple Music thanks to its large library of exclusive and user-created content. Read More


Apple buys machine learning startup Tuplejump

By Cody Lee on Sep 22, 2016

Apple has acquired an India/US-based machine learning startup known as Tuplejump, reports TechCrunch. The company has essentially confirmed the buyout, offering up its typical “Apple buys smaller technology companies” statement.

This is the iPhone-maker’s third publicly-known purchase of a machine learning company within the last year. Remember it bought out artificial intelligence startup Perceptio at the end of last year, and Seattle-based Turi a few months ago. Read More


Pinterest just bought Instapaper

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 23, 2016

In a newsworthy move that in all likelihood makes lots of sense, the photo sharing service Pinterest has acquired Pinterest, the popular app and web service for saving webpages to read later.

According to the announcement, Pinterest will continue to develop and maintain the mobile Instapaper app, available at no charge on the App Store. Read More


Apple buys personal health data startup Gliimpse

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 22, 2016

Apple has acquired another small startup, called Gliimpse, that has built a secure software platform for users to manage and share their own medical records, Fast Company learned Monday.

The acquisition reportedly happened earlier this year, but Apple’s been quiet about it and has now issued its usual non-denial, saying: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.” Read More


Apple acquires AI startup Turi for a reported $200 million

By Cody Lee on Aug 5, 2016

Apple has acquired machine learning and artificial intelligence startup Turi, reports GeekWire. Citing sources close to the deal, the outlet says the purchase price was somewhere in the neighborhood of $200 million, and the team will stay on and continue its work.

Turi, formerly Dato, builds platforms for developing intelligent applications using machine learning technology. Its products are used by a number of Fortune 500 companies for fraud detection, recommendation engines, lead scoring and other predictive capabilities. Read More


Verizon to buy struggling Internet giant Yahoo for a reported $4.83 billion

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 25, 2016

Monday, both Yahoo and Verizon Wireless said that the nation’s leading wireless carrier will be buying Yahoo’s operating business for a reported $4.83 billion. The transaction, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals, should grant the carrier over one billion total monthly search users while giving the two companies more than two dozen media and advertising brands, to be added to the AOL network, plus an email service with 225 million monthly active users. Read More


Japan’s SoftBank is buying iPhone CPU supplier ARM for a reported $32 billion

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 18, 2016

Japan’s carrier SoftBank has announced it will be purchasing British fabless semiconductor maker ARM Holdings plc for a reported $32 billion, which is around a 43 percent premium on its closing market value of $22.25 billion on Friday. ARM confirmed the deal (PDF download) on Monday.

According to the statement, ARM’s board is expected to recommend shareholders accept the offer. Apple is an investor in ARM and licenses its technology as a basis for custom CPU designs for its own A-series chips which power iOS devices. Read More


NYT music reporter claims Apple won’t be acquiring Tidal after all

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 1, 2016

The Wall Street Journal ran a story yesterday claiming that Apple was in “exploratory talks” to acquire music service Tidal, which rap mogul Jay-Z bought in March 2015 for a reported $56 million.

Ostensibly, Apple’s interest in Tidal revolves around its strong ties to artists: since the Jay-Z deal, Tidal has given 19 famous artists small stakes in the firm.

The Journal article cautioned that the current discussions might not result in a deal and now Ben Sisario, a music reporter at The New York Times, cited “two highly placed sources” as saying that Apple won’t be buying Tidal anytime soon. Read More


Apple said to be in talks to acquire streaming music service Tidal

By Cody Lee on Jun 30, 2016

Apple is in talks to acquire the streaming music service Tidal, reports The Wall Street Journal. Citing people familiar with the matter, the outlet says the iPhone-maker is exploring the idea because of the service’s strong ties to artists.

Rap mogul Jay-Z bought Tidal in March 2015 for $56 million, and has since given 19 famous artists small stakes in the company. The current talks with Apple may not result in a deal, and it’s unknown what terms have been discussed. Read More


Microsoft is buying LinkedIn for $26.2 billion

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 13, 2016

Windows giant Microsoft on Monday announced it’s purchasing business-oriented social networking service LinkedIn for a cool $26.2 billion. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a message to troops that he’s been learning about LinkedIn for some time “while also reflecting on how networks can truly differentiate cloud services.” LinkedIn has a network of more than 433 million business professionals, meaning Microsoft would be paying an average of about $60 per user. Read More


Future Fitbit devices to gain support for NFC-based contactless payment technology

By Christian Zibreg on May 19, 2016

Fitbit, which makes fitness accessories, activity trackers and other wearable devices, just acquired payments hardware firm Coin, signaling its intent to enrich its product lineup with contactless payment features. That’s right, your next Fitbit fitness tracker may let you pay for in-store purchases. Read More


iPhone manufacturer Foxconn buys Nokia feature phone business from Microsoft

By Christian Zibreg on May 18, 2016

iPhone manufacture and the world’s largest contract fabricator, Foxconn, has made an interesting purchase, snagging the Nokia feature phone business from Microsoft for a paltry $350 million with a little help from private equity backed HMD Global.

Nokia’s feature phones, which are powered by the Series 30+ operating system, once were its bread and butter—especially in pre-smartphone days. Read More


Tim Cook talks Didi acquisition during China trip

By Christian Zibreg on May 16, 2016

Apple CEO Tim Cook visited an Apple Store in Beijing this morning with Liu Qing, president of Didi Chuxing, the company the iPhone maker invested an astounding $1 billion in.

Also called the Chinese Uber, Didi is a ride sharing service and Apple’s investment comes at a time when the Cupertino firm is widely rumored to be secretly working on an electric car project. Cook said Apple and Didi both shared concerns for the environment.

He also revealed, according to China Daily, that app developers in China have now earned over $7 billion, half of which came in the past twelve months alone. Read More


Nokia is buying French health tracking company Withings for a reported $192 million

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 26, 2016

Nokia said this morning that it’s buying French health tracking company Withings for a reported €170 million, or about $192 million, as it looks to gain a foothold in the competitive digital health market.

Withings, which designs, builds and sells wearables with health and fitness tracking features, as well as devices for the connected home such as smart weighing scales, thermometers, blood pressure monitors, home and baby monitors and so forth, will become part of Nokia’s Technologies business. Read More


iPhone manufacturer Foxconn buys Apple supplier Sharp in a $3.5 billion deal

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 30, 2016

It’s finally official: the world’s leading contract fabricator, Foxconn, which assembles iPhones and other products for Apple and other consumer electronics companies, has purchased the struggling Japanese giant Sharp, one of Apple’s display panel suppliers, in a deal valued at a reported $3.5 billion.

As reported today by The Wall Street Journal, Foxconn believes this transaction will improve its position on the technology value chain and has plans to expand Sharp’s production capacity and invest in the production of OLED screens that future iPhones are expected to adopt. Read More


Facebook acquires company behind popular face swapping app MSQRD

By Cody Lee on Mar 9, 2016

Facebook on Wednesday announced that it has acquired the popular face swapping app MSQRD, and the company behind it, Masquerade. The terms of the deal are unknown, but it’s being reported that the founders will be joining Facebook.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the app, MSQRD allows you to apply various filters and effects to your photos and videos—not unlike Snapchat’s ‘lenses.’ You can apply masks, hats and other accessories, or simply swap faces with others. Read More


GoPro is buying powerful iPhone video-editing apps Replay and Splice

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 1, 2016

GoPro, an American manufacturer of action cameras that are popular in extreme-action videography, has acquired two mobile video editing apps, Replay and Splice.

In a media release yesterday, GoPro said that merging these apps into its mobile strategy will help them deliver powerful mobile editing solutions to GoPro customers “and billions of smartphone users,” indicating the apps will continue to be available in the App Store.

In fact, both apps will be coming to Android later this year, said GoPro. Read More


WSJ: iPhone contract manufacturer Foxconn is delaying the signing of Sharp takeover agreement

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 26, 2016

As previously reported, Apple’s favorite contract manufacturer Foxconn has made a $6.2 billion bid to acquire the ailing Japanese consumer electronics maker Sharp, which has been in the business for a cool 103 years now. Although Sharp’s board has made the decision to accept the offer last Thursday, it seems the acquisition is not a done deal after all.

As reported Friday by The Wall Street Journal, Foxconn is reportedly delaying the signing of the takeover agreement after it had been “surprised” by new information Sharp had disclosed just a day before. Read More


Foxconn to acquire Sharp for $6.2 billion

By Cody Lee on Feb 24, 2016

Apple partner Foxconn is set to acquire Sharp for roughly 700 billion yen (or $6.2 billion USD), reports Nikkei Asian Review. The outlet says that Sharp’s board voted on Thursday morning to accept the offer, and plans to restructure its operations under the Hon Hai umbrella.

The deal, which has not been officially announced yet, comes after years of failed negotiations between the two companies. Foxconn has made several attempts to acquire the struggling electronics giant, or large pieces of it, with the latest offer of $5.3 billion coming in January. Read More

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