Apple has acquired UK startup Spectral Edge as it looks to develop its photography arm.
The company has purchased Spectral Edge for an undisclosed figure, according to a new report from Bloomberg, in an effort to further improve its iPhone photography technology.
Spectral Edge says that its expertise is “at the cutting edge of image processing.
By combining patented Image Fusion with Deep Learning we can reveal more of the color, detail, and clarity in a scene.
“The smarter the processing, the more the image reveals the richness of the moment. It is embedded in real-time technology – no filters or apps required.”
Founded in 2011, the company, which is based in Cambridge, will no doubt make a great addition to Apple and its iPhone division, helping the Cupertino-based giant better compete on the software side of its camera.
Competitors including Google have been praised for using machine learning and artificial intelligence to improve the quality of their images.
Apple already processes images to improve quality, using technology such as Smart HDR and Deep Fusion, but the new technology from Spectral Edge could give it an advantage.
Though Apple is yet to confirm the acquisition, it’s not common for the company to release a statement on every company it purchases.
Bloomberg has reported that it has seen several documents and filings which would suggest that Apple now has total control over Spectral.
What’s more, Apple’s corporate lawyer, Peter Denwood, is named as a company director.
We are unlikely to know how much Apple has paid for Spectral Edge, but we do know that the startup has raised more than $5 million in funding since it launched, so it should be around the $10-50 million mark.
Whether the company’s executives and staffers remain in the organization remains to be seen; Apple has a habit of purchasing ideas rather than teams.
It’s been a busy year for Apple.
Back in February, the company purchased digital marketing organization DataTiger, and in June, Drive.ai.
According to Tim Cook, Apple had acquired 20-25 companies by May of 2019; that figure could have climbed to 100 by the end of 2019.
Are you excited to hear about Apple’s acquisition? Do you think the company needs to do more in camera software? Let us know your thoughts on this and more over on social media.