Apple quietly acquires AI start-up that emphasizes on user’s privacy
Apple is reported to have acquired the AI start-up Silk Labs which prides itself in developing smart home gadget while still respecting the privacy of the user. No wonder the above thought process did ring a bell or two with Apple that too being quite paranoid when it comes to upholding the privacy of its users.
A key aspect of Silk Lab’s functioning is that most of the processing of user data takes place within the user’s premises itself. That is quite contrary to the way Google or Facebook operates, with both companies collecting copious amounts of user data on the pretext of processing in the cloud to allow for a more personalized user experience.
Silk Labs, however, prefers collecting only key parts of user data which are then carried over to the cloud for processing. This ensures the majority of user information always stays within the user’s own device most of the time, thereby ensuring better control over how such data is to be managed or processed.
Silk Labs had also created an intelligent camera which also served as a hub for controlling other smart gadgets present in the home. The camera named Sense was endowed with AI abilities such as facial recognition and object recognition tech which was so advanced that it could even recognize pets as well.
The company was founded only in 2015 with former Mozilla CTO, Andreas Gal being one of the co-founders of the company. It had only about a dozen employees and has managed to raise about $4 million in public funding. The company later underwent a rejig in 2016 when it announced it would henceforth be dealing with only AI based solution rather than developing smart devices.
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For Apple, the acquisition does make a lot of sense in that it would provide a fillip to the company’s AI ambitions. That apart, the company can also draw on Silk Labs’ expertise to make a foray into the fast emerging smart home devices segment where it already is a laggard at the moment.