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Report: Microsoft  Considering 3D Camera Tech Acquisition?

Report: Microsoft Considering 3D Camera Tech Acquisition?

February 18, 2009 | By Leigh Alexander

February 18, 2009 | By Leigh Alexander
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Israeli newspaper are claiming that Microsoft is eyeing an acquisition of local "virtual reality" imaging tech startup 3DV Systems for $35 million, a move that would represent a new step for the company in the gesture-based gaming arena.

3DV Systems develops imaging technology for its Z-Cam digital cameras, and focuses primarily on the gaming market in the fashion of PlayStation's EyeToy or Microsoft's own Vision Camera, although it doesn't include wearable hardware.

3DV has been discussing the Z-Cam since early 2008, and marketing VP Tomer Barel spoke to Gamasutra at that time about the company's hope that its depth sensing camera -- using infrared technology in conjunction with a webcam -- and related gestural recognition technology could lead to new methods of game control.

Microsoft has gained a few footholds in camera-supported gaming on the Xbox 360 over the recent year with titles that use its Vision Camera, like Codemasters and Zoe Mode's You're In The Movies. It's unclear whether any possible acquisition of 3DV would enhance the Vision Camera or replace it entirely.

However, the $35 million deal would actually create a loss for 3DV's investors; according to local news site Haaretz, the company's raised $38.6 million in financing.


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