Apple Acquires Former Resident Startup Faceshift

Remember when we said Swiss game technology startups were on to something? We told you so! 

Today, Apple confirmed that it acquired the Swiss startup Faceshift, maker of motion capture technology recently used in Star Wars that can animate avatars—in real-time—based on people’s emotions. Sounds like the future of video chat is about to be animated.  

Faceshift was a resident startup at swissnex San Francisco in the CTI Market Entry Camp, and over the years swissnex helped enable Faceshift’s presence in Silicon Valley and San Francisco at events like GDC (the Game Developers Conference). 

Way back in 2013, in an exhibit we curated called Game Gazer we featured Faceshift’s technology as the underlying foundation for an artistic work titled Mimicry, made by then student game designers from the Geneva University of Art and Design (HEAD). Those students, by the way, have also gone on to achieve success as the game design firm Apelab!

As for Faceshift, we knew they were bound for greatness, and we couldn’t be more proud and pleased for the EPFL and ETH spin-off. When we interviewed Faceshift CTO Brian Amberg in 2013 he said he wanted nothing short of democratizing animation through motion capture and revolutionizing the way people communicate. Looks like they’re well on their way to doing just that.