A report says that Apple is looking to buy the Israeli semiconductor company that developed the Kinect 3D sensor with Microsoft.
Apple is after PrimeSense, the Israeli fabless semiconductor company that made the Kinect’s 3D sensor, according to a report from the newspaper Calcalist.
Calcalist’s sources say that Apple is offering up to $280 million to buy the 3D sensor company with an aim to embed its technology into future Apple products. Reportedly, a delegation of senior engineering managers from Apple’s optical hardware division visited PrimeSense in Israel earlier this month.
In all likelihood, PrimeSense’s 3D-sensor is destined for an upcoming refresh of Apple TV. Apple TV has had a tough time competing against other set-top boxes, and the inclusion of the ability to navigate through the system’s menu with hand gestures would make for an interesting feature.
Alternatively, Apple could be trying to get into the console gaming business by equipping its next generation of perhaps 3D-sensor equipped Apple TV with some beefy hardware and bringing the iOS app store to the device. While it wouldn’t be going after the next-generation of Xbox and Playstation, it would be able to take a bite out of the growing casual gaming market dominated in the console world by the Wii.
Apple is being tight lipped about the report, which is to be expected from the company. Perhaps something will emerge right around the time Apple launches its new version of iOS and iPhone.