Emotion-detection AI meets eye-tracking technology

One of the hallmarks of the human condition is empathy. So what happens when machines become adept at knowing how you’re feeling?

 That reality is closer than ever after an eye-tracking AI company has agreed to acquire emotion-detection software firm. Smart Eye and Affectiva announced that they have entered into an agreement in which Smart Eye will acquire Affectiva for $73.5 million.

The acquisition is a bid to secure a dominant position in the automotive industry, which has been aggressively adopting emotion-detection AI to improve the driving experience. Both companies have made inroads with OEM manufacturers (Smart Eye has contracts with 12 of the 20 largest global OEMs), but the space is increasingly competitive as Driver Monitoring Systems (DMS) become standard on high-end models and increasingly make their way into mid-market offerings.

“As we watched the DMS category evolve into Interior Sensing, monitoring the whole cabin, we quickly recognized Affectiva as a major player to watch,” says Martin Krantz, Founder and CEO of Smart Eye. “Affectiva’s pioneering work in establishing the field of Emotion AI has served as a powerful platform for bringing this technology to market at scale. At the end of the day, this is about saving lives and bridging the gap between humans and machines. In the future, looking back at this moment in time, I am convinced that this is a decisive moment for road safety thanks to the announcement that we have made today.”

Read more at ZDNet.com

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