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Apple to acquire Color Labs for FaceTime-related patents?

News that Apple is buying streaming video and photo sharing network Color Labs.

Apple has been busy buying up companies it seems. Yesterday we reported that Apple had acquired HTML5 specialist Particle, today comes the news that it is buying streaming video and photo sharing network Color Labs.

Color Labs is a start-up that was founded by Bill Nguyen and Peter Pham in 2011 with an unprecedented $41 million in pre-launch funding. Apple is said to have paid something in the range of: "high double-digits" for the company, according to The Next Web's "trusted sources".

Color Labs initially released a photo-sharing app, however that failed to attract users and Pham left the company. Then Nguyen created a video-sharing app that allows users to record and post 30-second silent video to Facebook - an app that was made available only to Verizon customers and attracted just 440,000 monthly active users, according to Forbes.

The Next Web and Forbes speculate that Apple may have acquired the company for its intellectual property, which includes a patent for a file format that could be used to record HD video. Forbes claims that Nguyen may have groomed some specific patents to appeal to Apple in the area of multi-device content sharing and concludes that many of its patents could be useful for FaceTime.

This isn't the first Nguyen run start up to be acquired by Apple, they acquired his music streaming service Lala in 2009, notes The Next Web. Nguyen is also known to have a relationship with Apple's Senior Vice President Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue.

Other reports have appeared claiming that Color Labs is shutting down.

Forbes claims that Google offered to buy Color for $200 before it even launched.

Follow Karen Haslam on Twitter / Follow MacworldUK on Twitter

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