Google rumoured to acquire Lytro for $40M

Lytro is a startup that started out in 2012 with the release of a rather unique camera, which allowed you to refocus on an image after you capture it.

The camera, despite being groundbreaking at the time, failed to have much of a significant impact on the consumer side of things. Lytro, however, has been leveraging the tech that powered the camera, dubbed Light Field Technology, in the field of VR. This tech would allow someone who makes live-action content for VR to gather information about a given volume of space by capturing the light passing through it by calculating the direction and angle at which it strikes certain sensors. If interested, you may check out Lytro's more detailed explanation here.

Google recently released an app on Steam that gave anyone with a VR setup the ability to walk through "still" images using technology that provided an output similar to what Lytro offers. Now, Google is rumoured to be looking to bolster its own offering with Lytro's by acquiring the latter.

Some sources state that Lytro will reportedly engage with Google in an 'asset sale' for $40 million, with not all Lytro employees shifting over to Google, while other sources quote a smaller figure of $25 million. These assets may or may not include the 59 patents Lytro currently has pending.

According to TechCrunch, Lytro gained $200 million in funding in its latest round in 2017, and a $360 million valuation to go with it. Given the numbers on the line here, there have been no comments from Google, Lytro or Lytro's investors (which include FoxConn, Qualcomm Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz) regarding the relatively paltry $40 million sale.

Source: TechCrunch | Images: Wikipedia, Lytro

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