Apple is reportedly negotiating to buy PrimeSense, the company behind Microsoft's Xbox Kinect motion sensor system. The deal, according to sources, could cost Apple upwards of US$300 million.
Apple may be in talks to buy motion control sensor company PrimeSense
Several PrimeSense executives recently visited Apple's engineering offices, according to Calcalist. Snapping up the company would give Apple its own system for hand and body motion control interfaces for devices such as Apple TV.
Letting PrimeSense fall into Apple's hands wouldn't be much of an issue for Microsoft since it has moved on to use its own technology in Kinect.
Along with its larger scale motion control technology, PrimeSense also develops compact chips suitable for portable devices such as tablets and smartphones. While that doesn't mean Apple intends to turn the iPhone and iPad into devices that use motion based controls, it does open up the possibility that future versions could include some kind of hands-off control system.
What seems more likely is that Apple would add motion controls to the Apple TV, and if the company ever does release the long rumored Apple HD television set, built-in motion control would be a good fit.
This isn't the first report this week that Apple is snapping up companies again. One report claims that Apple has purchased United Microelectronics Corporation so that it can start producing the A-series processors the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple TV use.
Assuming Apple really is buying up more companies, it's a sign that it wants to have even more control over its product design and manufacturing processes.
Apple isn't talking about its rumored buyout talks, but if the company really is interested in creating motion control interfaces, purchasing PrimeSense is the company it should be looking at.