Google acquires news reader start-up Wavii for about US$30m – report

24 Apr 2013

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Google has beaten Apple to the punch in acquiring news feed start-up Wavii for around US$30m.

Wavii uses natural language processing to automatically generate status updates on topics such as politics, celebrities and gadgets, the Seattle Times reported.

Microsoft veteran and angel investor Adrian Aoun founded the company in 2009, and it began operating publicly a year ago.

Under the deal, Wavii’s technology is expected to bolster Google’s Knowledge Graph by offering users improved results and direct answers to their queries.

Apple wanted Wavii in order to incorporate its natural language technology into the Siri voice-activated personal assistant feature, TechCrunch reported.

Wavii’s staff of 25, including Aoun, is to relocate from its Seattle, Washington, base, to Google’s Knowledge Graph unit in Mountain View, California.

There is no word as of yet from either Google or Wavii about the acquisition.

Tina held senior editorial positions at daily newspapers in Ottawa and Toronto

editorial@siliconrepublic.com