It is complicated to keep track of all the companies Apple acquires . Not only because it acquires many during a year, but because most of the time there is not even a public announcement of the acquisition. Of those that we were aware of during 208 we are going to make a brief review to see what they were doing before becoming part of the Bite Apple.
Apple has different reasons for not making public the company acquisitions it makes. One of these reasons, and perhaps the most important, is to avoid making public the different interests it has in the future. This is because depending on which sectors each of the companies it acquires is in, we can get an idea of what future products and services they want to develop.
Of all the times Apple went shopping in 2018, we have echoed it on a few occasions. Some are especially relevant, like the purchase of Shazam, others are less known but equally important, like Buddybuild. In chronological order , these are the following:
- Buddybuild: A tool for developers that allows continuous integration into the development of an app. This company based in Vancouver became part of Apple on January 2, 2018, now their employees are part of the Xcode team. More facilities in the future for iOS developers.
- Silicon Valley Data Science: A somewhat unusual acquisition, according to Bloomberg in January, Apple took over part of the company’s team. The startup has been providing data-based analysis for other companies for years, enabling those companies to improve their products and services. Most likely, they have been integrated into the App Store team, which now has announcements for developers.
- Texture: Of the most talked about acquisitions in 2018, because Apple itself confirmed it in March of this year. Texture is a subscription magazine service that will most likely become a part of Apple News where we see a paid magazine catalog under a monthly subscription.
- Akonia Holographics: Startup dedicated to augmented reality, you don’t have to say much more to know where the shots are going. In August of this year we echoed the news and what this might mean for Apple’s plans to create its own augmented reality device.
- Shazam: Although it may not seem like it, Shazam was officially acquired in 2018, even though the purchase was announced in 2017. It was in September of this year that the European Commission approved Apple’s purchase of Shazam. At the moment, it is not known how it will be integrated into Apple Music, although it has more to do with recommendations and trends than with easily finding a song that is playing.
- Spektral: In October of this year we learned that Apple had acquired Spektral. The company has a technology by which it can separate in an image or video the main subject from the background of the scene to replace the background with something else. If we add to this the depth system that Apple has developed over the years for the Portrait Mode… we can get an idea of why they bought Spektral.
- Dialog: It was not a purchase as such but we can practically consider it one more. Apple acquired assets from Dialog Semiconductor in October of this year. The two companies have reached a mutual agreement whereby Apple pays Dialog Semiconductor $600 million for its workers, a contract for chip development over the next few years, and control of several Dialog Semiconductor facilities worldwide.
- Asaii: October was Apple’s shopping month, they also took over the services of Asaii, a company dedicated to the analysis of trends in music. The service promises to find and identify future successful artists several weeks in advance of their success. Apple did not buy the company as such, but hired its founders.
- Silk Labs: Approaching the end of the year, in November 2018 we learned that they had acquired Silk Labs. This company is dedicated to artificial intelligence and how to integrate it into the connected devices of a house. The future of HomeKit seems to pass through this ring, so we will see if there are any relevant changes in the next few months.
- Platoon: The last purchase of the year took place at the beginning of December, although it is not completely confirmed. We are talking about Platoon, a British company dedicated to finding new artists with a promising future. Together with Asaii and Shazam, it seems that Apple wants to strengthen its music service well.
These have been the ten acquisitions that we know of this year. A lot of data analysis, a lot of services and especially a lot of technology to be able to integrate into existing products s. These integrations are not always clear and obvious, although over time, some of the improvements we see in Apple products come from having acquired other companies.
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