Samsung paid 238.93 million won on 7 October to acquire artificial intelligence startup Viv Labs, when the value of the Korean won was equal to $0.0009. It means the South Korean tech major signed a deal for about $215m.
Viv is now a subsidiary of Samsung Research America, suggests a regulatory filing spotted by VentureBeat. The filing suggests most of the money was for goodwill. Viv Labs has generated a loss of 3,424 million won. Before being acquired by Samsung Research America, Viv took on $30m in funding.
Last October, Samsung revealed its plan to acquire Viv, which was founded by Dag Kittlaus, Adam Cheyer and Chris Brigham, the creators behind Apple's Siri. The open artificial intelligence platform developed by Viv provides developers with the ability to build conversational assistants and integrate a natural-language based interface into application and services.
Apple reportedly paid more than $200m to buy Siri in 2010. The intelligent personal assistant was first introduced in the iPhone 4S as one of its key features.
Apart from Samsung, other tech majors are also in the race to expand their AI ability. Huawei seems to be the latest to join the list.
People familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that a team of more than 100 engineers are developing a digital assistant at Huawei's Shenzhen, China office. Huawei's technology would compete with the offerings by rivals such as Apple's Siri, Amazon's Alexa and Alphabet's Google Assistant.
Huawei's digital assistant may communicate in Chinese language, targeting the domestic market, but the company would continue to work with Google and Amazon outside China.