Apple acquires personal assistant app Cue to challenge Google Now

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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has acquired personal assistant application Cue. Financial terms were not disclosed, although insiders told TechCrunch that Apple paid between $40 million and $60 million. 

Apple confirmed the purchase to The Wall Street Journal, issuing its boilerplate response: "Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans."

Cue--already removed from Apple's App Store--provided customized daily schedules leveraging information collected from across the user's applications and accounts, including email, contacts and calendars as well as Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) posts, Dropbox files and LinkedIn updates. From there, Cue allowed users to change or cancel reservations, check into flights, track shipments or notify contacts of schedule changes.

Cue appears to complement Apple's existing Siri voice assistant service and the new Notification Center, introduced in conjunction with the company's iOS 7 mobile operating system, launched last month. Cue also recalls the Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Now personal assistant service, introduced for Android in mid-2012. Google Now presents a series of virtual "cards" containing information about local weather, traffic, events and nightlife, each automatically generated in relation to a user's present whereabouts, the time of day and information in the users' Google account.

For more:
- read this TechCrunch article
- read this Wall Street Journal article

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