Deals done this past week

28 Nov 2011

An overview of the week in deals in the Irish and global technology sector.

Microsoft acquires VideoSurf to enhance entertainment on Xbox LIVE

Microsoft has acquired video discovery technology company VideoSurf. The video firm’s offerings will be integrated into Xbox LIVE, which plans to roll out new entertainment from almost 40 providers.

VideoSurf is responsible for back-end technology which can analyse frames within videos to let content be discovered quickly and accurately.

Future Human

“Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Division is at the leading edge of connected entertainment,” said Lior Delgo, CEO and co-founder of VideoSurf.

“We are incredibly excited to be working together on our mutual passion for creating amazing consumer experiences and reinventing how consumers search, discover and enjoy content on their televisions,” said Delgo.

eBay acquires recommendation engine

E-commerce giant eBay has acquired online platform Hunch, a provider of “customised recommendations to its users based on their individual tastes”. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Hunch’s patented prediction technology – also known as a “taste graph” – uses signals from the around the web, such as social networks, who users follow, and answers to Hunch’s own questions, to recommend topics to users.

Hunch is expected to help eBay expand merchandising and relevance capabilities for buyers and sellers on eBay. For example, Hunch will generate recommendations for items available on eBay based on a user’s tastes.

Hunch can also be applied to other technology opportunities across eBay, including search, advertising and marketing initiatives, to better surface product and search results based on customers’ tastes.

Shipping firm signs US$150m deal with HP

One of the world’s largest global shipping companies, Maersk Line, has signed an infrastructure services agreement worth more than US$150m with HP. The deal will support the shipper’s global growth strategy.

Under the five-year agreement, HP will help Maersk Line become an Instant-On Enterprise by using HP’s cloud-enabled data centres and HP Workplace Services to optimise its technology infrastructure.

HP will create a private cloud computing environment for distributed and local applications using HP Cloud Computing Solutions.

HP will also take over the Service Desk function at Maersk Line and will deliver Workplace Services to maintain the company’s computing devices. In addition, HP will provide support and monitoring for Maersk Line.

Hibernia Atlantic in fibre deal with Interxion

Transatlantic fibre cable provider Hibernia Atlantic is to host a point of presence for its cable system at Interxion’s DUB2 data centre.

The new Hibernia Atlantic link into DUB2 specifically caters to North American corporations in Ireland and foreign investment organisations that require the fastest routes into and throughout Ireland.

“Hibernia Atlantic’s new network deployments, such as this one into Interxion’s Dublin facility, further stimulates growth to the region and attracts additional investments,” said Fergus Innes, VP of Sales, EMEA of Hibernia Atlantic.

“Hibernia’s high-capacity, fibre-optic cable system is especially relevant for our digital media community, such as content delivery providers and social media engines, that require high-capacity bandwidth,” said Tanya Duncan, managing director of Interxion.

PlayStation Vita partners with Vodafone for 3G connectivity

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) has made Vodafone its ‘preferred provider’ of 3G connectivity for its upcoming portable console, the PlayStation Vita.

According to SCEE, the 3G and Wi-Fi model of the PS Vita will be sold with a Vodafone SIM card in a number of countries across the globe, though the device won’t be locked to the Vodafone network.

These countries include Ireland, the UK, Italy, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Australia, New Zealand, France and the Netherlands.

Customers who use the Vodafone network for their 3G PlayStation Vita will also get racing game WipEout 2048 for free from the PlayStation Network.

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