Microsoft In Talks To Acquire 3D Camera Company 3DV


3D technology was all the rage at CES this year, and last month Mark Cuban said 3D is “the LSD of 2009” (that’s a good thing, Mark meant). Now Microsoft (MSFT) is looking to get in on the 3D game and is in talks to acquire Israeli 3D tech company 3DV.

3DV’s three-dimensional “Zcam” cameras follow body movements, and allow people to control an electronic device with body motions. The most obvious applications are in gaming.

3DV’s tech isn’t a brand new idea, but if the deal goes through Microsoft will be picking up the imaging tech on the cheap. Press reports say Microsoft is offering $35 million for the company — versus the $38.6 million the company has already raised.

Microsoft probably wants the cameras as an peripheral for this or future generations of the Xbox console. But 3D cameras — especially together with the “touch” features in upcoming Windows 7 — could have a transformative effect on PC-based gaming, a stronghold of Microsoft consumer appeal against the ascendancy of Apple’s (AAPL) Macs.