Apple has acquired location data company Locationary, which provides data on local businesses around the world. Not just an acqui-hire, Locationary's technology will also be used by Apple in an effort to improve Apple's mapping efforts. Locationary uses crowdsourced data to continually update and maintain an accurate database of information about businesses, which Apple would find incredibly useful, says All Things D
$20 million has bought Apple WifiSLAM, a startup specializing in indoor location mapping. Apple confirmed the sale, but wouldn't discuss specifics or future plans. Jessica E. Lessin of the Wall Street Journal reports:
Apple bought Lala for $80 million down and $80 in retention bonuses, and then, after founder Bill Nguyen and many of the engineers left anyway to found Color, Apple bought them again for around 7 million.
There are some rumors going around that Apple is considering the purchase of crowd-sourced mapping app Waze. Apple has a ton of cash, and can certainly buy Waze if that's what both parties want, the way Apple bought Chomp, Color, Polar Rose, Siri, and other companies over the years.
Apple has reportedly bought troubled, sometimes outright mocked, startup Color Labs for somewhere in the double-digit millions, or at least enough to pay off investors' who forked over $41 million to date. Color Labs was founded by entrepreneur Bill Nguyen, the same entrepreneur who also founded Lala, which was also sold to Apple, also for double-digit millions. So clearly, winning strategy.
Apple has acquired Particle, a firm specializing in the design of HTML5 websites and web apps. Particle has previously done some HTML5 work for Apple, along with others such as Google, Amazon, and Motorola and they are also behind video sharing service Robo.to. The deal for the acquisition happened last month, and is mostly a talent, rather than product, acquisition.
Apple is reportedly interested in acquiring The Fancy, an online social sharing network similar to Pinterest, but with a strong commerce component as well. A 20-person New York startup, The Fancy allows users to share things they like, and then buy those things, with The Fancy taking 10% of the sale price, with a system in place for users to get a cut as well.
Apple has reportedly agreed to by AuthenTec, a company that specializes in fingerprint authentication technology, for $350 million, or 58% over market value on Thursday. Saabira Chaduri of the Wall Street Journal says:
According to Mark Gurman over at 9to5Mac, Apple has acquired a third mapping company, this time 3D specialists 3C Technologies.
Sources say that C3 Technologies CEO Mattias Astrom , C3 Technologies CFO Kjell Cederstrand, and lead C3 Technologies Product Manager Ludvig Emgard are now working within Apple’s iOS division. The leading trio, along with most of the former C3 Technologies team, is still working as a team in Sweden (interestingly, the division is now called “Sputnik”), where the C3 Technologies company was located prior to the Apple acquisition.
According to 9to5 Mac, Apple has acquired Wi-Gear which is a small Bluetooth headphone designer from San Francisco. Previously Wi-Gear had made A2DP stereo headphones known as iMuffs along with Bluetooth adaptors for older generation iOS devices that did not support Bluetooth 2.0 and A2DP. Wi-Gear products were always aimed squarely at iPod devices.