Artificial Intelligence: Google Acquired Alter, An AI Avatar Startup, Two Months Ago

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The fact of the Alter acquisition was not made public.

TechCrunch reported Thursday that Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) had made a hush-hush acquisition of Alter, an AI avatar startup that helps developers put avatars into games and apps. The transaction, estimated at $100 million, occurred a couple of months ago but was disclosed only now to Tech Crunch by a source familiar with the matter.

However, the deal was confirmed to Tech Crunch by a Google spokesperson who declined to discuss its terms.

Alter was founded and previously known as Facemoji, but has since rebranded. It writes on its LinkedIn page: “Alter is an open source, cross-platform [software development kit (SDK)] consisting of a real-time 3D avatar system and motion capture built from scratch for web3 interoperability and the open metaverse. With Alter, developers can easily pipe avatars into their app, game or website.”

Google reportedly intends to beef up its content using Alter’s capabilities as it moves to counter competition from TikTok.

Tech Crunch noted that some senior personnel (for example, chief operating officer, Jon Slimak) had updated their LinkedIn profiles to reflect the fact that they now worked at Google. However, they did not refer to the acquisition.

Prior to being acquired, Alter had raised $3 million in seed funding from investors including Play Ventures, Roosh Ventures and Twitter (NYSE: TWTR).

Related Story: William Shatner Celebrates 90th Birthday By Creating An AI Lookalike

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