Facebook acquires virtual search startup to boost AI capabilities

Joanna Estrada
February 10, 2019

It's not clear exactly what team within Facebook GrokStyle and its "AI capabilities" will be a part of. The company didn't disclose it's joining Facebook. Based in San Francisco, the start-up was founded in 2015. Last year, the company partnered with Ikea on its augmented reality furniture app. A spokesperson from Facebook confirmed to Bloomberg that the social network is taking on both the technology of the startup and its team to "contribute to [its] AI capabilities".

"We founded GrokStyle to reimagine the retail experience. We are incredibly proud of what we have built - and believe we have only scratched the surface of what is possible with computer vision", the company wrote.

Facebook Inc said it acquired visual shopping and artificial intelligence startup GrokStyle Inc in a move to bolster the social-media company's own AI work.

Facebook-owned Instagram also launched something similar in 2016, introducing new tools to allow retailers to more easily sell their goods via their posts, and for users to find out how to buy them, through shoppable tags. The founders of the project presented the basic technology of GrokStyle at SIGGRAPH and received a grant of 225 thousand dollars, and by 2017, has attracted another $ 2 million. from the National science Foundation for the development of the application. Earlier this month, the company bought the team behind blockchain technology company Chainspace for an undisclosed sum.

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