Google acquired Alter, an artificial intelligence (AI) avatar startup. The industry predicted that Google will add functions possessed by Ulter to the YouTube short form (short video) content “Shorts.” The reason is that YouTube Shorts’ competitive platforms TikTok and Instagram are already supporting 3D avatar templates.

According to foreign media such as TechCrunch on the 31st, Google acquired AI avatar startup Ulter for $100 million (about 142.55 billion won). The acquisition was completed about two months ago, but both Google and Altern did not disclose it to the outside world.

Ulter supports avatar systems such as clothing and accessories to be put into games or apps through AI. Ulter started with “Facemoji” in 2017 and changed its name to Ulter. Ulter headquarters are in the United States and the Czech Republic. Ulter attracted $3 million (about 4.276.5 billion won) in seed rounds led by global investor Play Ventures and participated in Twitter during the Face Moge era.

Google is recently focusing on competition with short form content platforms such as TikTok and Instagram Reels. Google is expected to use alternative technology to compete with TikTok, which provides 3D avatars to apps. TikTok provides a template function that recognizes faces with cameras and creates 3D avatars. Meta’s Facebook and Instagram are also supporting 3D avatar production. YouTube shorts are still available for thumbnails

There is no profit sharing. Google has decided to share profits with creators by inserting video advertisements between YouTube shorts feeds since early 2023.
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However, Google did not disclose how to use Ulter’s technology in detail. TechCrunch quoted an anonymous source as saying, “Google hopes to improve and strengthen its content.”

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