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Microsoft acquires VideoSurf to bolster Xbox Live search

Israeli startup's vision tech to enable faster, more accurate searches

Microsoft has acquired Israeli startup VideoSurf for a reported $100 million in cash.

VideoSurf developed back-end computer vision technology that enables rapid, accurate searching. Microsoft intends to integrate the new tech into the Xbox 360 ecosystem to complement its expanding library of multimedia content.

"VideoSurf's content analytics technology will enhance the search and discovery of entertainment content across our platform," said Xbox Live director Alex Garden in a statement.

"This holiday we will launch voice search across our entertainment partners on Xbox LIVE. Over time, as we integrate VideoSurf's technology into our system, we are excited about the potential to have content tagged in real time to increase the speed and relevance of the search results."

Initially, the deal was thought to be worth $70 million, but TechCrunch claims that a "solid source" puts the value at $100 million in cash.

Over the next few months, Microsoft will introduce content from more than 40 major media partners to Xbox Live. The list includes HBO, Comcast, the BBC, Channel 4, Canal+ and LOVEFiLM.

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Matthew Handrahan

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Matthew Handrahan joined GamesIndustry in 2011, bringing long-form feature-writing experience to the team as well as a deep understanding of the video game development business. He previously spent more than five years at award-winning magazine gamesTM.

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