Google acquires United Kingdom technology start-up Redux

Cambridge-based Redux bought by Google

Google Acquires Redux, a Startup That Integrates Speakers into Smartphone Displays

With the acquisition, Google now has an extra 178 patents under its belt, which it can use to enhance its future smartphone and other devices - perhaps even future Google Home hardware.

Alphabet's Google has bought a United Kingdom -based startup that could dramatically change how you listen to music on your smartphones. The transfer of shares of Redux's holding company NVF Tech was confirmed by United Kingdom regulatory filings on 13 December, but Crunchbase says the deal happened in August.

Redux was founded in 2013 out of Cambridge, and built technology that uses vibrations to turn surfaces of phones or tablets into speakers or provide haptic feedback. The startup is developing technology, and it will be able to turn certain surfaces into speakers.

At the time, it said the sound quality was 'decent'. Different effects can be delivered simultaneously to different fingers, using actuators to create bending waves rather than bulk movement. Mashable was able to show off a demonstration of the tech in action during MWC 2017. This is a company that has technology that allows the display on your mobile phone to act like a speaker. And displays with tactile feedback could offer a unique selling point for the company's devices - similar to Apple's pressure-sensitive "3D touch" iPhone screens.

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So far, Redux has only been able to use its technologies inside PCs and some vehicle infotainment systems - but that could be about to change. We hope Google can take advantage of it soon. Before the acquisition, Redux focused not only on the mobile market, but also on the computing, automotive, and industrial markets, so its technology seems flexible enough to be used in several fields. The Pixel 2 in particular had very thick bezels that's very much the same size as its predecessor. While the external space a speaker demands is one thing, it also occupies room inside the phone.

Google has made a concerted effort at CES to promote new features in its series of voice-controlled speakers. Redux shutdown its website after Google's acquisition.

United Kingdom tech startup Redux has been acquired by technology giant Google.

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