Microsoft confirms acquisition of SwiftKey for $250 million

Microsoft has acquired SwiftKey, a popular keyboard app for an amount of $250 million. As part of the deal, Swiftkey employees will join Microsoft to help them in the future development of the app.

With a user base of 300 million people worldwide and growing, SwiftKey app is not currently available for Windows Mobile. However, Microsoft is scheduled to integrate SwiftKey technology into the Windows Word Flow keyboard in the upcoming months. Meanwhile, SwiftKey has disclosed that it will continue to develop the Keyboard app for Android and iOS.

Commenting on the recent development, Jon Reynolds and Ben Medlock, the co-founders of SwiftKey revealed that their aim is to enhance interaction between people and technology. They also disclosed that joining Microsoft is the next stage in their journey towards empowerment.

Speaking to media soon after the announcement of the acquisition, Harry Shum, Executive Vice President, Technology and Research at Microsoft stated that the current merger shows Microsoft’s commitment to bring its software and servers to all platforms.

Shum also revealed that Microsoft will not only continue to develop Android and iOS apps but also explore the possibility of integrating the technology across various products and services, which includes Windows 10.

No surprise, if the future version of Windows comes bundled with SwiftKey, which will inevitably change the way we interact with tablets and PCs.

Shum further added that Microsoft will share more information about SwiftKey technology with their Guinness World Record Word Flow technology for Windows in the next few months.

Powered by machine learning and artificial intelligence technology, SwiftKey offers predictive word suggestions to users and also automatically inserts missed spaces during typing of content. With the ability to type content by sliding, SwiftKey includes
several keyboard themes in addition to usage of emojis.

Ever since Satya Nadella assumed office as the CEO of Microsoft in February 2014, the company has acquired several apps and services. Microsoft is currently involved in the development of apps and services for other platforms as well in addition to its own products such as Windows, Visual Studio, and OneDrive.

With the rapid decline in Windows Mobile market share, Microsoft is targeting users of other platforms to stay in the competitive technology market.

To recall, Microsoft had acquired Acompli, Wunderlist, and Sunrise over the past two years. According to Insider reports, Microsoft has used Acompli to develop the refreshed Outlook email client on Android and iOS.

Available in a broad range of languages, SwiftKey recently revealed that Stephen Hawking’s wheelchair make use of their flagship AI technology to assist him to speak and write.

Prior to Microsoft recent merger with SwiftKey, Google had acquired DeepMind in 2014 for $400 million. Moreover, Apple had acquired VocalIQ, a natural language processing AI firm in October 2015 to enhance its virtual personal assistant on iOS, Siri.