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In the Media

article imageFacebook rumored to buy facial recognition tech company (updated)

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By Leigh Goessl
May 29, 2012 in Internet
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Facebook has been a busy company the last several months. Aside from its highly anticipated IPO that recently made its debut, the social network giant has also been steadily building its portfolio of assets.
Rumors are surfacing Facebook is about to make another substantial purchase.
According to The Next Web (via Israeli business publication Calcalist), rumors have surfaced that Facebook is seeking to buy a company called Face.com; a company whose primary product is facial recognition technology. The deal is rumored to be between $80 million and $100 million.
Face.com is an Israeli company founded in 2007. The company dubs itself as "The world’s largest and most accurate face recognition platform." The company also has an app called "Photo Tagger" which is built for use on the Facebook platform.
No confirmation of this purchase has been given, and, at this point, is just a widely speculated deal. The Next Web points out TechCrunch reported on this potential buy well over a year ago, but Facebook allegedly wasn't offering a high enough price in previous negotiations. So the possibility of an acquisition seems real enough.
Facebook has been steadily building its vast empire, between its purchases and developments. Just recently the company launched its new Facebook Camera product, sealed the deal with Instagram, and is rumored to also be in the process of acquiring Opera Software.
Although, it is not surprising if Facebook is more actively trying to acquire Face.com. Several tech media sources point to the fact that Face.com is angling towards the mobile market, a market Facebook is eager to build and has experienced some struggles.
If this purchase does go through, how will this impact user privacy? Probably with far reaching consequences, as Megan Geuss, PC World, pointed out last year.
As to whether or not Facebook and Face.com can come to an agreeable deal, if any is in the midst at all, is a 'stay tuned' sort of news, at least for the time being. It appears neither company seems ready to share any information to either confirm or refute these rumors.
Face.com CEO Gil Hirsch reportedly has said, there is "nothing new to share."
UPDATE 1:20 p.m.: TechCrunch is reporting this afternoon that "multiple" sources are saying this is a "done deal."
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