Rumors have it that Apple acquired AI startup Turi. The “machine learning platform for developers and data scientists” is said to be a $200 million investment. Why the sudden move and why is artificial intelligence so important to Apple?
Turi, an artificial intelligence company, was founded three years ago. It started out under the name of GraphLab, moved on to Dato and ultimately Turi. It has been developing software and services based on machine learning that help developers create and manage their own software that uses this form of artificial intelligence. It can also help companies detect fraud, build recommendation engines, and identify customer use patterns.
Because of the startup’s competency in developing machine learning technologies, it comes as no surprise that Apple wants to use Turi’s tools to improve its products. This could mean more features for the famous AI personal assistant and knowledge navigator Siri.
Apple, however, keeps mum about the recent acquisition. It is known that the multinational technology company has the habit of purchasing smaller businesses from time to time but would rather not discuss their actions and future plans.
Nonetheless, back in July at WWDC 2016, Apple, Inc. CEO Tim Cook has spoken about the importance of AI: “Machine learning is improving facial and image recognition in photos, predicting word choice while typing in messages and mail, and providing context awareness in maps for better directions. Deep learning within our products even enables them to recognize usage patterns and improve their own battery life”.
Although we have yet to receive an official statement whether Apple acquired AI startup Turi or not, as far as we are aware, it most likely has. Apple, Inc. has purchased many other artificial intelligence startups over the past few years and integrated their technologies into its products.
Back in January, the technology company has purchased Emotient. Last year, Apple invested in VocalIQ and Perceptio to improve Siri by engaging the service into more realistic conversations and also limit the amount of personal data shared.
It is also rumored that Turi will continue to operate at its headquarter in Seattle. At the moment, the developers at Turi are led by Carlos Guestrin, professor of machine learning at the University of Washington.
IMAGE SOURCE: IXBT