The rivalry between Apple and Samsung is well documented, both in and out of the courtroom. But a new report today makes it seem as though the two companies may be brought somewhat closer together. According to the Wall Street Journal, Samsung has been in talks to buy Nuance Communications, the tech company behind the speech-recognition software that powers Apple’s digital assistant, Siri.

Nuance, you may know, is the company behind popular speech-recognition software Dragon Dictation. According to the post, the discussions took place sometime earlier this year, though not much more than that is known about the potential acquisition. It should be noted, however, that Samsung has also used Nuance’s services in its own devices, specifically in the form of the Google Now-like digital assistant S Voice. Moreover, Nuance provides services to Nintendo and Panasonic in addition to Samsung and Apple. As such, if Samsung were to buy the company, it would see a whole new revenue stream start pouring in from some of its biggest technological rivals.

If such a deal were to go through, this also wouldn’t be the only instance of Apple going to Samsung for technology used in its products. The iPhone’s A5 and A6 processors, for instance, were manufactured by Samsung despite being designed by Apple. It’s likely that the legal animosity between the two companies wouldn’t get reduced by much if Apple started writing checks to Samsung for Siri upgrades, but it certainly would make their relationship that much more interesting.

In terms of non-Apple implications for this possible acquisition, the post also points out that Nuance is providing technology to be used in Samsung’s wearable devices. Owning Nuance in-house could conceivably give the company a bit of a leg up in its quest to dominate the world of wearables.

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[Source: WSJ]


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