Apple has now finally confirmed that it has acquired PrimeSense, the Israel-based company that created the technology that was used by Microsoft for its first Kinect motion capture sensor. Rumors about Apple’s interest in the company first hit the Internet in July and last week the Israel news outlet Calcalist claimed that the deal to buy PrimeSense had been finalized.
AllThingsD reports they received a statement from Apple confirming the PrimeSense deal but offered no other details. The company’s PR rep said simply, “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.”
Another Israel news source, Globes, claims that the actual deal between Apple and PrimeSense was closed on Friday, for the price of between $300-$350 million. The company’s five founders are expected to get between $50-$80 million each as a result of the deal.
While PrimeSense was the main company behind Microsoft’s first Kinect sensor that was released for the Xbox 360 and later for Windows, the second generation Kinect hardware was developed in-house by Microsoft. It made its official debut Friday as part of the Xbox One launch and will be released for Windows sometime in 2014.
Before being acquired by Apple, PrimeSense was reportedly working on a project code named “Capri”, which is supposed to be a small and low powered version of the Kinect sensor that could be made to fit inside smartphones and tablets. In theory, Apple could use the “Capri” tech in future versions or its iPhone and iPad devices, as well as the long rumored Apple television project.