Desti, a startup launched in 2012 after securing $2 million in financing from SRI International, Horizons Ventures and Carmel Ventures, provides natural language processing and artificial intelligence to help people find what they are looking for and will now find itself integrated into Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) HERE mapping business.
HERE Mapping remains Nokia’s
HERE mapping was not sold to Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) when the handset business was sold though Microsoft did sign a deal that licensed HERE for the next four years before the handset acquisition was finalized. Desti was spun-out from SRI International, a company most famous for producing Siri for Apple’s iPhone.
The Desti app will be wound down within the next three months, and a search today revealed that the iOS app has already been nixed from Apple’s App Store. This according to Don Zereski, VP of search and discovery at HERE.
Rather than a stand alone app, Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) will look to incorporate Desti into HERE “over the balance of this year,” said Zereski.
APIs for developers?
No word was given as to the financial terms or whether Desti’s APIs will be opened up to third-party developers as Nokia makes its own APIs available.
Speaking of the HERE branded apps, Zereski said, “The Desti backend will beocme a part of the platform over time.”
Desti will now be able to search Nokia’s location data as it tries to build more hands-free and mobile-friendly interaction on top of HERE.
This won’t be limited to HERE mapping services, “Desti technology goes way beyond maps,” Zereski says. HEREs location data is already built around natural language recognition. “Desti has done a terrific job mining the web to collect data about places. It allows users to discover them using the way we speak about them. It lets users discover information in a more intuitive way.”
HERE is a small part of what remains of Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) following the sale of its handset division that was finalized in April. HERE represents a little shy of 10% of Nokia’s current revenues.
For Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK), the company is certainly hoping to keep Microsoft on board after the four-year agreement expires as well as adding additional customers.
“I don’t expect consumers to pay for services but Desti provides ways to create more commerce models around the product,” Zereski notes. “It will allow consumers to book hotels and restaurants from our products.” Before elaborating, Zereski was cut-off by someone sitting in on the call from public relations who made it clear that that was a plan, but remained theoretical.