Meta acquires haptic technology startup
Facebook parent Meta Platforms has acquired haptic technology startup Lofelt, a company that specializes in developing touch technologies in mobile devices. The Berlin startup develops design tools and products that are designed to replicate the illusion of touch in virtual reality.
Lofelt’s technology can replicate the experience of touch in a virtual setting through forces or vibrations in a hardware device, like a smartphone or video game controller. The company’s key product was Lofelt Studio, a suite of tools that was designed to made it easy for developers to design how they wanted haptics in mobile apps and video games to feel.
The company announced that it was ending support for its products as of July 7th and that it was “embarking on a new adventure.”
“We’re excited that members of the Lofelt team have joined Meta,” says Meta.
With haptic touch feedback technology, Meta has indicated that it could build devices that give users a more immersive illusion of being in the metaverse.
“We’ve already had this experiment with haptic gloves where you can, if you touch a digital object, if you drop the ball from one hand to the other, you can feel the ball in your hand physically,” said Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a previous interview. “And that’s pretty cool.”
Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. According to reports, Meta was Lofelt’s sole shareholder as of a June financial filing, indicating that the acquisition was completed weeks ago. Prior to the deal, Lofelt had raised approximately 10 million euros (about $10 million) and had about 25 employees.