ARM has now acquired Apical, a global manufacturer of imaging and embedded computer vision technology that allow next generation devices to understand and act intelligently on information from their environment.
Apical is one of the UK’s fastest-growing technology companies and its advanced imaging products are used in more than 1.5 billion smartphones and approximately 300 million other consumer/industrial devices including IP cameras, digital stills cameras and tablets.
The acquisition was closed for $350 million yesterday. It supports ARM’s strategy by enabling imaging products for next generation vehicles, security systems, robotics, mobile and any consumer, smart building, industrial or retail application where intelligent image processing is needed. Apical’s technology complements the ARM graphics, display and video processor roadmap with products like:
Spirit: A power-efficient computer vision technology that comprises dedicated silicon IP blocks that deliver an on-chip computer vision capability by converting raw sensor data or video into a machine-readable representation of an image.
Assertive Display: Assertive Display enables screens to adapt to changes in light by overcoming brightness limitations while reducing power consumption.
Assertive Camera: Configured as a range of image signal processors (ISPs) and software packages, Assertive Camera delivers dynamic range, noise reduction and colour management.
“Computer vision is in the early stages of development and the world of devices powered by this exciting technology can only grow from here,” said Simon Segars, CEO, ARM. “Apical is at the forefront of embedded computer vision technology, building on its leadership in imaging products that already enable intelligent devices to deliver amazing new user experiences. The ARM partnership is solving the technical challenges of next generation products such as driverless cars and sophisticated security systems. These solutions rely on the creation of dedicated image computing solutions and Apical’s technologies will play a crucial role in their delivery.”
Apical is an imaging technology IP business founded in 2002 that employs approximately 100 people, mainly at a research and development centre in Loughborough, UK. Its technology has shipped in more than 1.5 billion smartphones, including premium handsets.
“Apical has led the way with new imaging technologies based on extensive research into human vision and visual processing,” said Michael Tusch, CEO and founder, Apical. “The products developed by Apical already enable cameras to understand their environment and to act on the most relevant information by employing intelligent processing. These technologies will advance as part of ARM, driving value for its partners as they push deeper into markets where visual computing will deliver a transformation in device capabilities and the way humans interact with machines.”