Amazon quietly acquires Yap in clear bid to combat Siri

Amazon recently quietly purchased Yap, a Charlotte-based company that specializes in voice-to-text technology. CLTBlog, a Charlotte-focused website, discovered a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that doesn’t actually name Amazon as the purchaser of Yap, but it does attribute the acquisition to a company called “Dion Acquisition Sub,” and the “Surviving Corporation” listed by the SEC has the same address as an Amazon.com office located on 410 Terry Avenue in Seattle, Washington. Read on for more.

According to Yap’s website, it appears the company’s voicemail service was shut down during October of this year, a month after the SEC documents say the purchase was completed. It appears likely that Amazon will use Yap’s voice recognition technology to compete directly with Apple’s virtual personal assistant, Siri. The online retailer will soon release its first Android tablet, the Kindle Fire, and rumors dating back as far as May have suggested the company may be working on an entire family of devices, including smartphones.

Yap, like Siri, could be a valuable addition to Amazon’s tablets and also to a possible smartphone offering the retailer has been rumored to be developing. Neither Amazon nor Yap have confirmed the purchase.

[Via The Atlantic]

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