Google purchased a company that turns displays into speakers


Redux was founded in 2013 out of Cambridge, and built technology that uses vibrations to turn surfaces of phones or tablets into speakers or provide haptic feedback. The transfer of shares between NVF Tech Limited, the holders of Redux and Google was confirmed on the 13th of December, last year.

While no one was paying attention at the end of 2017, Google swooped in and purchased a company in the United Kingdom called Redux that has a couple of pretty unique ideas around display panels.

The technology could give future Pixel smartphones an advantage over their iPhone rivals - not to mention other Android devices - as they attempt to deliver more display in a physically smaller package. Redux is able to turn screens into a speakers by vibrating the screen itself.

At the time, it said the sound quality was 'decent'.

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So far, Redux has only been able to use its technologies inside PCs and some auto infotainment systems - but that could be about to change. If replaced, that could leave more space for a larger battery or other components: even, perhaps, the return of the 3.5mm headphone jack, were Google so inclined. It could also improve waterproofing for future phones since it eliminates the need for speaker holes. Its main Google division started selling its own smartphones in 2016, so new engineering talent from Redux may help the company develop handsets with better sound. At the CES consumer electronics conference in Las Vegas this week, Google is heavily promoting its voice-controlled speakers that compete with Inc.'s Echo device.

It remains to be seen what Google's plans are for this technology.

Google has acquired a United Kingdom startup that can turn mobile device displays into speakers.