Google Acquires Jetpac, an Intelligent Photo-Analysis App Maker
Adding to the long list of artificial-intelligence hiring, Google Inc is buying Jetpac Inc, the startup that designs social travel applications.
In an official tweet, Jetpac Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer Pete Warden directed people to a new company homepage that announced the news:
We look forward to working on exciting projects with our colleagues at Google. We’ll be removing Jetpac’s apps from the App Store in the coming days, and ending support for them on 9/15.
That may have been a disappointment for the existing users, but for people who use Google services there is some good news. As company managed to simplify a complex branch of artificial intelligence known as computer vision and make it easy for lots of people to use.
More recently, Jetpac developed a mechanism for spotting smiles in pictures to discern how happy people are in a city.
The Jetpac team is highly skilled in this particular field which is an area Google has done plenty of work on, but it certainly could use more talent and ideas for ways to implement image-recognition technologies as plenty other companies, including Microsoft and Baidu, beef up their own deep-learning operations.
Jetpac announced a $2.4 million funding round in 2012. The startup’s investors include Khosla Ventures, Morado Venture Partners, and Jerry Yang. Earlier in its life, the Jetpac app let people explore travel pictures from their Facebook friends and decide where they wanted to visit.
Last January, Google also bought DEEPMIND, an artificial intelligence startup, which was founded in 2011 by Demis Hassabis, Shane Legg and Mustafa Suleyman. The team is based in London and combine the techniques from machine learning and systems neuroscience to build powerful general-purpose learning algorithms. Also, earlier this year, Google bought Nest Labs Inc, which makes smart thermostat and smoke alarms, for $3.2 billion, making the deal one of the largest in Google’s history.
Check this amazing video where the company explains how their app works.