AI photo startup Polarr raises an $11.5 million Series A

Bay Area photography announced this morning that it has raised an $11.5 A. The new round of funding, led by Threshold Ventures with participation from Pear Ventures and Cota Capital, brings the startup’s total funding to around $12.5 million, according to the latest Crunchbase figures.

At the moment, the company is probably best known for its photography for iOS and Android, which utilizes machine and AI to improve image editing. The company says it has around four million monthly active users.

This round of funding will go toward research and development, engineering and partnerships, the latter of which are starting to become a big for Polarr. In fact, it’s using the news to highlight the fact that it was tapped to bring its technology to the Samsung Galaxy S10’s native camera app. Polarr has previously teamed with other big hardware names, including Qualcomm and Oppo.

“As deep learning compute from the cloud to edge devices, there is a growing opportunity to provide sophisticated and creative edge AI technologies to mobile devices,” CEO Borui Wang said in a release tied to the news. “This new round of financing is a tangible endorsement of our approach to enable and inspire everyone to make beautiful creations.”

Polarr’s tech is becoming increasingly valuable as phone makers look to differentiate their handsets’ imaging outside of the hardware. Notable recent generations of handsets from top companies like Samsung, Apple and Google have leaned heavily on AI and ML updates to stand out from the crowd.

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