Google acquires biometric company Neven Vision

Google announced today that they have brought biometric and photo recognition company Neven Vision into the Google fold. Neven Vision has patents on technology ranging from photo analysis to face recognition in video files to several patents for facial capture for avatar animation. Sounds like a fascinating partnership. The company is heavily focused on mobile phones and also offers a product to deliver coupons to mobile devices, something I was hoping would be included with today’s Google Maps coupon announcement.

Google was previously interested in aquiring photo recognition company Riya, but in the end did not. Riya has since expanded its focus beyond facial recognition.

Google says that it will use the newly acquired technology to extract information from photos, though it says that facial recognition in particular may be available “some day.” Gigaom’s Lizz Gannes points out that the LAPD already uses Neven Vision’s technology to recognize gang members. Investors in the company include Anthem Venture Partners and Zone Ventures. The price of the acquisition was not disclosed.

Interesting update: as of midnight PST almost all the links on the Neven Vision site are now bringing up Google 404s.