Magic Leap buys Israeli NorthBit to enhance their cyber security


Florida-based Magic Leap, one of the companies considered to be at the forefront of augmented reality, is reported to have scooped up NorthBit, an Israeli software solutions provider.

At this point, the sale price does not appear to have been made public.

NorthBit was co-founded in 2012 by CEO Gil Dabah and CTO Ariel Shiftan. While not strictly a cyber security firm like many other companies in the Startup Nation, NorthBit garnered some press last month when they announced that they had successfully hacked Android’s OS using the Stagefright exploit, highlighting the risk of remote hacks on over 95% of devices running the software.

Not much is known about the secretive Magic Leap other than the fact that they are laying the groundwork for the next generation of augmented reality. Despite this ambiguity, they have raised a significant amount of capital. Their Series C round that was finally announced back in February brought in $793.5 million worth of funding, bringing them to a very impressive valuation of $4.5 billion.

Perhaps equally as impressive is their list of investors. In the Series C round, they pulled into their roster of backers big names like the Alibaba Group out of China, along with return investments from Google Inc. and Qualcomm Ventures. Other new investors for that round included Warner Brothers, Fidelity Management and Research Company, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, and Andreessen Horowitz.

It makes a significant amount of sense that Magic Leap would look to bolster their cyber security capabilities, given the massive potential for the multiple uses of augmented reality technology.

Beyond the basic need to protect the account information of folks using the technology for games, augmented reality is already being spoken about in the future of commerce, medical technology, and communication just to name a few of its possible uses.

As Magic Leap continues to hone in on their final product, we can expect more acquisitions that will help the company to augment their capabilities. One company that is building relevant technology is DeepOptics with their liquid crystal lenses that can adjust their composition to meet the needs of the wearer. This helps deal with issues in AR and VR where the brain has difficulty making sense of what it sees in front of it through images, conflicting with its other senses.

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