Alibaba has purchased an Israeli augmented reality (AR) company InfinityAR in a deal thought to be worth more than $10 million (£7.5 milion).
This morning the Chinese ecommerce giant announced that it was to acquire the startup, in which it already had a significant stake, for an undisclosed sum.
InfinityAR’s technology uses simple and affordable stereoscopic cameras to transform any device into a content augmentation platform.
Its AR engine creates an accurate 3D digital scene representation of the user’s surroundings, allowing them to interact with digitally augmented content using intuitive hand movements.
When Alibaba first invested $15 million in the company in 2016, its chief executive Motti Kushnir told Globes: “Alibaba is very interested in our product because it is an open platform, and it believes that it will be a milestone in the shopping and gaming world in the near future.
“There are experts who claim that the entire cellular sector will undergo a revolution and some of it will even become superfluous with the entry of the augmented reality revolution.”
The director of Alibaba’s Isreal development centre Prof. Lhi Zelnik-Manor, added: “Alibaba is delighted to be working with InfinityAR as one team after three years of partnership.
“The talented team brings unique knowhow in sensor fusion, computer vision and navigation technologies. We look forward to exploring these leading technologies and offering additional benefits to customers, partners and developers.”