Bump was initially made available on Apple's iPhone as a substitute for NFC - Near
The decision to buy Bump seems to have been partly driven by the impending release of Apple's iOS 7, the latest version of its iPhone software. That introduces a technology called AirDrop which could be used to transfer similar data types - including photos or web addresses - using a combination of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to multiple devices at once without requiring the phones to touch. "There's no bumping your phone," said Apple's iOS software chief
For Bump, that could mean that its biggest platform, iOS, would become less useful if people begin using AirDrop instead of its app.
The price of the sale hasn't been disclosed, though AllThingsDigital reported sources putting the price at between
Bump was founded in 2008 and first released its app on Apple's
Writing on the Bump blog, its chief executive and cofounder
Our mission at Bump has always been to build the simplest tools for sharing the information you care about with other people and devices. We strive to create experiences that feel like magic, enabled behind the scene with innovations in math, data processing, and algorithms. So we couldn't be more thrilled to join
He said that Bump and the Flock app, which allows people to create shared photo albums, "will continue to work as they always have for now".
Bump uses a combination of apps running on the devices which "bump", and the company's own servers. In an FAQ, the company explains that "The app on your phone uses the phone's sensors to literally "feel" the bump, and it sends that info up to the cloud. The matching algorithm listens to the bumps from phones around the world and pairs up phones that felt the same bump. Then we just route information between the two phones in each pair." The app uses location information and sensor detail to determine which two devices which have sent a "bump" are in direct contact.
By contrast, Apple's Airdrop is an ad-hoc peer-to-peer Wi-Fi network with encrypted file transfers, which does not route through outside servers, and so doesn't need an internet connection.
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