In a major deal, Google has acquired GIF based services of Tenor
Google has acquired mobile GIF keyboard and search engine Tenor for Android and iOS. This acquisition will assist Google to add-up GIFs inside Google images and other services like Gboard more easily. Although, Google made it clear in a separate blogspot that Tenor will stay an independent brand, and Google will only aid Tenor to find more content and API partners. However, no information regarding the financial terms was divulged by the companies.
Tenor was founded in 2014 and has rapidly cemented its foothold in the GIF focused platforms. The company has already partnered with top brands like iMessage, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter. The San Francisco-based company attracts almost 300 million users to its platform and 12 million monthly searches.
"Most people now use Google Images to find more information about a topic, and to help them communicate and express themselves—case in point, we see millions of searches for GIFs every day," Google's director of engineering Cathy Edwards said in a blog post. "We’ve continued to evolve Google Images to meet both of these needs, and today we’re bringing GIFs more closely into the fold by acquiring Tenor, a GIF platform for Android, iOS, and desktop."
David McIntosh, the co-founder of Tenor will lead the team at Google along with his other partners, Erick Hachenburg and Frank Nawabi. According to the co-founders of Tenor, videos are an inextricable part of messaging and helps in expressing the emotions more clearly. So, Tenor came up with a basic tool that enables phone users to share video and animated clips without manually pulling GIFs from the web.
After this acquisition, it's not clear if the deal would make any difference to companies like Facebook and Apple who are already using the GIF platform in their messaging services to let the users add GIFs in their keyboards.
"Whether you’re using the Tenor keyboard or one of our other products, you can expect to see much more of this in your future," Edwards said.
According to analytics firm App Annie, Tenor’s “GIF Keyboard” stands out to be the most downloaded app in its category on both iOS and Android. And from the past two years, Tenor’s average keyboard download ranking is twice to that of its closest competitor, Giphy. Apart from that, Tenor’s GIF bot is the most frequently used chatbot on FB Messenger.
Tenor mobile messaging services clubbed with the first GIF keyboard debuted on Apple's iOS operating system. Tenor claims that its keyboard is compatible across most of the social media apps like iMessage, Google’s smart keyboard app Gboard, LinkedIn, Slack and a few more.
Last month, Google acquired Xively, an Internet of Things platform that basically connects products. The company offers IoT platform to product-based firms to accelerate and integrate their data into other systems.
Since making into the industry in 2014, Tenor has raised a total of $32 million. The announcement of Series B (the second phase of raising funds by a company) by the Tenor this month has helped Tenor to raise $17 million.