Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) confirmed the acquisition of a new company, Faceshift, a startup that specializes in gesture recognition, and develops a software able to identify facial expressions to emulate a digital simulation.

Few months ago, there were already rumors of the purchase, however, the news was confirmed by TechCrunch. The Switzerland software Faceshift, which has been used in the new film “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” identifies the gestures made by the actors, and are then imitated through a character digitally designed, accurately and in real time. That way they provide the realistic creatures we see in movies.

Apple recently bought Faceshit a software that analyzes face motions of an actor, and describes them as a mixture of basic expressions, plus head orientation and gaze. Credit:

Despite Apple didn’t explain their purpose or plans, some speculations were made, as the unique ability to recognize facial expressions of someone might be useful for security applications, as TechCrunch notes. Similarly, turning people into digital avatars could also prove handy with the rise of virtual or augmented reality.

Faceshift isn’t the only company purchased by Apple. They also bought in 2010 Polar Rose, a company that allows facial recognition; they also acquire the manufacturer of motion detection sensors 3D, known as PrimeSense, some years back. Earlier this year, Apple bought Metaio, whose augmented reality technology was being used by major brands such as Macy’s and Ikea.

Source: TechCrunch