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Apple Acquires Startup That Brings Zoom Into VR

Apple declined to discuss its plans for the acquired company, Spaces.

Apple has acquired Spaces, a startup that has developed technology to bring videoconferencing apps such as Zoom into virtual reality.

The acquisition, which was first reported by Protocol, was later confirmed by Apple.

“Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans,” Apple said in a statement provided to outlets including CRN.

On its website, Spaces said it is “heading in a new direction” but does not mention Apple.

“Thank you to our users and partners who participated in our awesome VR video conferencing product and the many people who enjoyed our VR location-based entertainment attractions found at theme parks, theaters, and more,” the company said.

Protocol reported that Spaces began as a project at DreamWorks Animation, and spun out in 2016.

While Spaces originally focused on providing virtual-reality experiences at locations such as theme parks, the startup pivoted to using its VR capabilities for videoconferencing apps such as Zoom and Google Hangouts.

“The real magic is when you walk over to the whiteboard and brainstorm with a half dozen of your co-workers and it’s a lot more like things used to be. For me, it just feels a little more like the old reality before the virus,” Spaces co-founder Brad Herman wrote in a post on Reddit about the VR videoconferencing solution.

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