According to a new report from MacRumors, Apple has reportedly acquired Coherent Navigation, a GPS firm founded in 2008 by Cornell and Stanford engineers.
One of the company’s areas of focus was High Integrity GPS (iGPS), which combines the signals from the traditional GPS satellites and the signals from voice/data provider Iridium’s satellites to provide greater accuracy and precision. iGPS was also able to offer higher signal integrity and greater jam resistance. The company claims that the product was able to provide location information accurate to within centimeters.
Coherent’s CEO Paul Lego started working at Apple in January, while co-founders William Bencze and Brett Ledvina joined the Cupertino-based company last month. Coherent’s website has been taken offline, however, on April 30 the DNS servers were updated to point to Apple’s servers.
“Coherent Navigation would be just the latest in a long string of mapping-related acquisitions Apple has made over the last several years, including the developers behind Pin Drop, Locationary, WifiSLAM, Hopstop, Embark, and Broadmap. Apple has continued to improve its mapping services since a rough transition away from Google Maps with the release of iOS 6 in 2012, with the company working to add features like transit information and perhaps Street View-like imagery to its services.”
It is still unclear as to what the team from Coherent Navigation will be working on at Apple. The tech giant could have acquired the company because there was a specific technology they were interested in or they simply wanted the talent of Coherent’s employees to be working on Apple’s own projects.
Update: Apple has confirmed the acquisition to the WSJ.
Apple confirmed the acquisition with its standard statement after news of a deal becomes public: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plan.”