Apple acquires AI start-up Xnor

Anne Freier | January 17, 2020

App Business

Apple is bolstering its Artificial Intelligence ambitions and has just acquired Xnor.ai – a start-up that specialises in edge-based AI tools, according to GeekWire.

Although the exact acquisition amount is not known, Apple is said to having paid roughly $200 million for the company.

It’s also been suggested that Xnor image recognition tools based on AI could be used as part of the next big iPhone release.

Xnor is a company that produces technologies and machine learning tools for image recognition that function on low-power devices rather than the cloud. That is particularly advantageous for device makers like Apple.

Other customers include aerospace, retail and automotive clients.

On the dedicated Xnor platform, developers can submit their own code for consideration.

“We’re making it so simple that any developer should be able to deploy AI into their platform, into their application, into their software, and use it,” CEO Ali Farhadi said.

The company raised $12 million back in May 2018 in a Series A funding round led by Madrona Venture Group.

Apple didn’t comment on the acquisition in much detail, but adding Xnor to bolster its devices’ cameras makes total sense.