Two graduates of the University of Cambridge graduates who quit their day jobs in 2008 to develop an app have seen their risk pay off massively.
Jon Reynolds and Dr Ben Medlock created a free predicitve keyboard app that works on both Apple and Android, and now Microsoft are reportedly offering them a deal worth a whopping £174 million.
‘Swiftkey’ works by using artificial intelligence to learn a user’s writing habits and finishes words and phrases for them on that basis.
Check it out:
The Daily Mail reports that the app now has 300 million users, supports over 100 languages, and its developers have used their expertise to upgrade Professor Stephen Hawking’s communication software.
As a result the renowned astrophysicist can communicate faster and has been able to continue giving university lectures.
Microsoft’s executive vice president of technology and research, Harry Shum, has reportedly said of the deal:
We love SwiftKey’s technology and we love the team that Jon and Ben have formed.
That’s why today I’m excited to welcome the company’s employees to Microsoft. We believe that together we can achieve orders of magnitude greater scale than either of us could have achieved independently.
The Mail also reported the app founders as saying:
Eight years ago we started out as two friends with a shared belief that there had to be a better way of typing on smartphones.
We’ve come a long way since then; today hundreds of millions of people around the world, and many of the leading mobile manufacturers, rely on our language prediction technology. Our users have saved an estimated 10 trillion keystrokes across 100 different languages, which adds up to over 100,000 years of reclaimed typing time.
Our number one focus has always been to build the best possible products for our users. This will not change. Our apps will continue to be available on Android and iOS, for free. We are as committed as ever to improving them in new and innovative ways.
Millions of pounds set to hit their bank balances and they are still committed to keeping the app free for customers. Top work guys.
An NCTJ Journalist with an MA in Sports Journalism, Kieron is an experienced social media journalist who has worked in the industry since 2015. His experience includes work with ITN, the MEN, WISH/WIRE/TOWER FM, and 8:50 Sports Digest… not forgetting his time at ASDA.