Apple has acquired WaveOne, a company that wants to provide better image compression with artificial intelligence.
Apple does not formally confirm the acquisition, but Techcrunch found that WaveOne’s website has been offline since January. However, many former employees are active today in the company’s machine-learning groups. At the same time, a former sales director of the company announced the sale to Apple on LinkedIn.
WaveOne was founded in 2016 and is based in California, like Apple. One of the founders, Lubomir Bourdeb, previously founded Meta’s AI research department. The other co-founder, Oren Rippel, also worked at Meta on computer vision.
With the acquisition, WaveOne technology will probably be used for the Apple TV+ video service. Unlike classical compression, WaveOne’s algorithm is aware of the content of images. This means that you can choose per image to prioritize faces or specific parts of the image, for example, against backgrounds or less important things.