Apple has bought Emotient which is an artificial intelligence startup that reads people’s emotions by analysing facial expressions.
The tech giant’s plans for Emotient were not immediately clear and Apple is not talking about it other than to say that the deal is going ahead.
Emotient’s software reads the expressions of individuals and crowds to gain insights that can be used by advertisers to assess viewer reaction or a medical practitioner to better understand signs of pain in patients.
The software could be used for anything Applish but it might be part of Jobs’ Mob’s move into the health market. Equally though it could be used by a device to assess a response to a pushed advertisement.
San Diego-based Emotient had previously raised $8 million from investors including Intel Capital.
There are hints that the move might be to counter something that Tesla Motors Chief Executive Elon Musk did late last year by announced $1 billion in funding for an artificial intelligence non-profit called OpenAI. If that sexy technology goes OpenSource then Apple will have to make more open source projects, and we can’t have that.