Image: Lighthouse AI
Apple has acquired the patent portfolio of Lighthouse AI, the intelligent AI security camera company that shut-down last year. Here’s everything we know so far.
Apple’s love affair with AI has been going strong for a number of years, and have made significant progress within the AI community. Much of Apple’s AI work can be seen in their products, most notably with Siri on iOS and HomePod.
According to IAM, Apple acquired multiple patents that include “depth-sensing technology.” Furthermore, the acquisition also included patents related to “Computer-vision based security system using a depth camera” and “Method and system for using light emission by a depth-sensing camera to capture video images under low-light conditions.”
AppleInsider published all eight of the properties Apple acquired: “U.S. Patent No. 9,396,400 for a “Computer-vision based security system using a depth camera,” No. 9,965,612 for “Method and system for visual authentication” and No. 10,009,554 for “Method and system for using light emission by a depth-sensing camera to capture video images under low-light conditions.” The company also purchased applications currently under review including Method and system for using light emission by a depth-sensing camera to capture video images under low-light conditions, two properties (1, 2) for a “Computer-vision based security system using a depth camera,” Speech interface for vision-based monitoring system, Two-way communication interface for vision-based monitoring system and Method and system for incident sharing in a monitoring system. Former Lighthouse CEO Alexander Teichman is credited as an inventor on each patent and application.”
Lighthouse developed the $299 Lighthouse Camera and required an additional subscription for full AI functionality. The camera used a facial recognition subsystem to identify frequent visitors from the home-owners and family members and identified pets from humans.
Due to its high price and competition from Ring, Nest, Arlo, and Wyze, Lighthouse failed to find demand in the market for the product. Hopefully, now Apple owns many of the patents, we may see Lighthouse live on in future first-party HomeKit devices.