Forget motion sensing and hands-free gestures, could Apple’s motivation for acquiring PrimeSense be something different entirely? One industry insider thinks it has everything to do with Apple Maps.
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Will Apple’s PrimeSense acquisition be used to improve Apple Maps?


Speculation surrounding Apple’s recent acquisition of PrimeSense has mostly centered on the way the company’s technology might be used to introduce hands-free and motion-based controls with future Mac, iOS and Apple TV hardware. One analyst does not believe that to be the case.

Based on the deployment of PrimeSense’s proprietary technology by companies interested in mapping 3D environments, Jessica Lessin— formerly of the WSJ — believes Apple may have targeted the Israeli-based startup to help improve Apple Maps. Lessin cites sources that say PrimeSense’s motion-sensing technology hasn’t evolved much since it was first used to help make the original Xbox Kinect a reality. In fact, Microsoft no longer relies on the company’s technology in the latest iterations of the platform.

Apple instead could leverage its latest acquisition to create 3D maps of indoor places like malls and airports, the latest frontier for mapping service like Google Maps and Apple Maps. It wouldn’t be quite as flashy as a system of motion-based controls for Apple’s newest gadgets, but it would quietly help to improve a service that Apple sees as a core focus moving forward.

[via Jessica Lessin]

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