Apple Confirms Purchase Of Faceshift, Motion Capture Studio Behind Upcoming Star Wars
After months of speculation regarding the mysterious buyer of Faceshift, a real-time motion capture company, Apple has finally confirmed that they are the ones who acquired the mo-cap firm although no further details of the acquisition have been given.
In a statement to TechCrunch, Apple declared its acquisition of Faceshift while also claiming that this is pretty much a routine for the technology giant known for iPhones and Macbook laptops, acquiring smaller tech companies from time to time and assimilating them in the larger Apple universe.
Initial reports in September cited documents showing Faceshift was indeed purchased by an unnamed outside company. One of the new corporate directors taking over control of Faceshift’s IP, at least on paper, was an attorney from Baker & McKenzie, a firm known to work with Apple on quiet takeovers.
This isn’t Apple’s first acquisition of a technology firm linked with facial recognition technology. The company not only holds multiple patents in the facial recognition and motion capture fields but also purchased Polar Rose in 2010 and PrimeSense, which worked on Kinect hardware and software, in 2013.
Faceshift uses 3D sensors and cameras to capture facial expressions in real time as well as movement by actors for animated or CG oriented movies. Perhaps their biggest project to date would be the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie where they are responsible for capture and mapping of human expressions onto Alien faces.
The company also owns a software called Faceshift Studio that is used in tandem with Maya and Unity.