Google to Buy Face-Recognition Company

by Tom Taulli | October 2, 2012 11:50 am

It’s not yet official, but word is out that Google (NASDAQ:GOOG[1]) has agreed to acquire start-up Viewdle for a price tag rumored to be between $30 million to $45 million.

Viewdle develops sophisticated facial-recognition and augmented-reality technology focused on mobile devices — the kind that allows users to automatically tag photos.

The company was founded in Ukraine back in 2006, but has since moved to Silicon Valley. It has also received venture capital from big names like RIMM (NASDAQ:RIMM[2]), Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM[3]) and even Best Buy (NYSE:BBY[4]).

The move is just another example of how Google, while best known and most successful thanks to its search engine, keeps on innovating[5]. No wonder its doubled in value over the last year[6], recently giving it the title of second-largest tech company over boring old[7] Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT[8]).

While still in the early stages, facial recognition should be a key driver for mobile apps, especially with a focus on social networking. In fact, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB[9]) recently acquired one of the top player’s in the space, Face.com.

So far, Viewable’s apps have been based on the Android platform. The company is also currently working on porting its technologies to Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL[10]) iOS platform, though.

Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPOPlaybook[11], a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He also is the author of “All About Short Selling”[12] and “All About Commodities.”[13] Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli[14]. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

Endnotes:
  1. GOOG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=GOOG
  2. RIMM: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=RIMM
  3. QCOM: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=QCOM
  4. BBY: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=BBY
  5. keeps on innovating: http://investorplace.com/2012/09/should-i-buy-google-stock-3-pros-3-cons/
  6. doubled in value over the last year: http://investorplace.com/2012/10/google-overtakes-microsoft-in-market-value/
  7. boring old: http://investorplace.com/2012/09/microsoft-is-really-just-a-boring-utility/
  8. MSFT: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=MSFT
  9. FB: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=FB
  10. AAPL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=AAPL
  11. IPOPlaybook: http://investorplace.com/ipo-playbook/
  12. “All About Short Selling”: http://www.amazon.com/All-About-Short-Selling/dp/0071759344/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1302184310&sr=1-1
  13. “All About Commodities.”: http://www.amazon.com/All-About-Commodities/dp/0071769986/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpi_10
  14. @ttaulli: https://twitter.com/ttaulli

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