Google acquires United Kingdom technology start-up Redux

Google acquires United Kingdom technology start-up Redux

According to Bloomberg, the company acquired a Cambridge, UK startup called Redux that makes technology created to turn surfaces into speakers.

It remains unclear when Alphabet bought the sound specialist, but the tech-giant confirmed that it obtained the shares on December 13.

Founded in 2013, Redux Labs developed a technology that eliminates the need for small speakers in mobile phones, freeing up space for batteries or other components.

Google has declined to comment on the acquisition, including how much might have been paid for Redux. Redux's website is now blank, and its official Twitter account has not posted an update in almost nine months. The actual deal was reportedly made in August 2017. But in the recent years, Google and other Alphabet subsidiaries have started focussing quite a lot on hardware products including Pixel smartphones, which seems like a good place to use the tech. Not only does this mean that more advanced haptic feedback is possible, but the displays can also be used as speakers. The Verge had some hands-on time with the company's tech previous year, trying out a tablet which vibrated its screen to function as a speaker, as well as a number of displays that used haptic feedback to mimic the feel of buttons, sliders, and dials. The company owns 178 patents with another 50 pending.

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So far, Redux has only been able to use its technologies inside PCs and some vehicle infotainment systems - but that could be about to change.

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones both feature dual front-facing speakers, which has been welcomed by many critics and users.

At the CES consumer electronics conference in Las Vegas this week, Google is heavily promoting its voice-controlled speakers that compete with Amazon's Echo device.

It has also emerged that the company quietly purchased a United Kingdom startup called Redux in August.

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