Facebook has acquired Digital Staircase, a startup that creates photo apps for the iOS, according to reports.
On the Digital Staircase blog, founder Hamilton Chong wrote:
We're announcing today that we're joining Facebook, where we'll help to bring these kind of mobile innovations to a broader audience. Many things may change, but our dedication to immersive experiences will not. . . . In a couple weeks (around 12/05/2011), we will be closing down Digital Staircase as a standalone entity and will remove all iOS products from the Apple iTunes store. Those of you who own apps (MovieCam, SmartSplice, StereoCam, etc) will still be able to use them on your current device. Please look out for new innovations to be added to Facebook.
Digital Staircase was selling a few apps on iTunes, notably MovieCam, SmartSplice and StereoCam, all of which may be incorporated into Facebook. The acquisition may be just as much a talent buy as a tech one, according to the Register, mainly because the apps never cracked the Top 200 in the App Store.
Chong also attended Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's alma mater, Harvard University, where Chong was an undergrad and also got his doctorate in computer science.
Facebook increasingly sees Google+ as competition, so it has to evolve and offer more services to its users, including versions of photo apps that users are utilizing in their non-Facebook time.