Back in July, it was rumored that Apple was purchasing PrimeSense – the company behind the original Kinect for Xbox 360. Those rumors went unconfirmed for almost six months, but both companies have finally come clean regarding their relationship.
Reuters reports that Apple has officially acquired PrimeSense. While there’s no official press release about the acquisition, an Apple spokesman told the publication that Apple “buys smaller technology companies from time to time.” He further added that Apple doesn’t “generally discuss [their] purpose or plans” when it comes to these acquisitions.
So, what is PrimeSense? The company may be most well known for helping Microsoft develop the original Kinect for the Xbox 360, but the Israeli company has been incredibly busy over the past few years developing gesture-based technologies for various fields, from entertainment and robotics to medicine and industry.
While it’s not known what exactly Apple will have PrimeSense do, the company’s latest product may give us a clue as to what we can expect. Back in January, the company unveiled a new chip that would allow smartphones to be controlled via gestures. This kind of technology could very well show up in the next iPhone.
Another interesting application relates to Apple’s long-rumored television. PrimeSense has already developed gesture-based control software for televisions, and it could be what Apple has been looking for in its quest to bring a television to market.
Beyond those two applications, it’s unknown if Apple will use PrimeSense’s technology for anything else. The company has made Kinect-like sensors for PCs, and Apple might offer its own “Kinect” for Macs to compete with the amazing work Microsoft has been doing with Kinect for Windows. Beyond that, we’ll just have to wait and see what Apple and PrimeSense have in store for the world of gesture-based control.