Apple has bought SnappyLabs, the developer behind the popular high speed iPhone camera app SnappyCam.
Rumours of the acquisition started over on TechCrunch, before being confirmed by Apple’s generic response to such events.”Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans,” reads the familiar statement.
Which essentially translates as ‘we don’t like to talk about it, but yes we have.’
Another solid indication that Apple has swallowed SnappyLabs whole is the fact that the SnappyCam app has now disappeared from the App Store. The SnappyLabs website has also been taken down.
SnappyLabs is a one-man team comprised of Australian engineer John Papandriopoulos. His incredibly popular SnappyCam app enabled the iPhone to take full resolution pictures at a full 30 frames per second, thanks to some clever custom algorithms.
To place that into context, the iPhone 5S – which is by no means considered a slouch in the smartphone camera stakes – can capture images at 10 frames per second. That’s about the same rate as many high-grade DSLR cameras.
The acquisition of SnappyLabs fits Apple’s usual way of doing things, which is to quietly buy small specialised teams to work on specific aspects of its products.
For example, back in August Apple bought Embark, a public transport map app specialist. Then in November, Apple bought PrimeSense, the company that created the technology behind the first Xbox Kinect system.