May 20, 2024
Apple Acquires WaveOne Startup for AI Video Compression

Apple Acquires WaveOne Startup for AI Video Compression

Posted March 27, 2023 at 3:15pm by iClarified
Apple has acquired WaveOne, a startup that was developing AI algorithms for compressing video, reports TechCrunch.

The company's former head of sales and business development, Bob Stankosh, announced the sale on LinkedIn last month.

After almost 2 years at WaveOne, last week we finalized the sale of the company to Apple. We started our journey at WaveOne, realizing that machine learning/deep learning video technology could potentially change the world. Apple saw this potential and took the opportunity to add it to their technology portfolio. I want to thank my co-founders, Lubomir Bourdev and Oren Rippel as well as Craig Lytle for helping to bring the idea to market and advancing this concept for commercial applications. Over my career, I've been very fortunate to be involved in so many cutting edge technologies and am now looking forward to my next endeavor. Stay tuned!

WaveOne was founded in 2016 by Lubomir Bourdev and Oren Rippel. Bourdev was a founding member of Facebook AI Research, and founded and led the Facebook AML computer vision team. Rippel was a research fellow at Harvard as part of the Harvard Intelligent Probabilistic Systems group. He specializes in machine learning, with expertise in deep learning and Bayesian optimization.

The two co-founders believed common methods of compressing and distributing video to be archaic and worked to develop sophisticated Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) algorithms that can produce exceptional video content with low bitrates, high quality, and low costs.

WaveOne's AI-Native codec was compared against the latest traditional codecs for I-frames and with viewers asked to choose the best. At the same bitrate, viewers preferred WaveOne's AI-Native codec 9.2x more often than HEVC, 9.8x more often than AV1, and 4.6x more often than VVC.

It's believed that Apple could use technology developed by WaveOne for in numerous areas including FaceTime, Apple TV+, and more. Check out the company's paper on Efficient Learned Flexible-Rate Video Coding here.

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Apple Acquires WaveOne Startup for AI Video Compression
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