Google could turn the next Pixel's touchscreen into a speaker

Cambridge-based Redux bought by Google

Alphabet, 's parent company, has secretly acquired a United Kingdom start-up that specialises in technology to turn smartphone screens into speakers. According to regulator filings, the shares of Redux' holding company were transferred to Alphabet in early December a year ago.

"Our technology enables smartphone manufacturers to reclaim valuable space within phones, which could be filled by a bigger battery", Redux Chief Executive Nedko Ivanov said at the time.

Google has declined to comment on the acquisition, including how much might have been paid for Redux.

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On Wednesday night, a report revealed on Bloomberg quietly that Google acquisition of "Redux" could have major implications down the road. The actual deal was reportedly made in August 2017. According to Crunchbase, Redux has also previously raised more than $5 million in funding before it was acquired by Google.

The company's technology is focused on "Bending waves" to produce "advanced surface audio and haptics" and improve the user experience of various devices. The same controlled vibrations could also be used to deliver haptic feedback through the display.

The US tech giant snapped up Cambridge firm Redux which can turn screens into speakers using haptic feedback.

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The startup held 178 patents, according to the company's LinkedIn page, almost all relating to using the surfaces of smartphones, tablets, and other devices into audio amplifiers.

The takeover of the sound specialists could see an influx of new engineering talent for Google that could help the company incorporate better sound systems into its handsets in the future.

Sometime a year ago, Google quietly acquired a United Kingdom startup doing rather interesting work with sound, including a new type of speaker and haptic feedback.

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