Google Acquires Video Rendering Firm Zync Render

The visual effects cloud-based rendering company is the latest in a busy string of Google acquisitions this year.


Google has acquired Zync Render, a visual effects cloud rendering vendor that has been involved with movie hits including Star Trek Into Darkness, American Hustle and Flight, and will integrate it into Google's Cloud Platform.

The Zync Render deal was announced by Belwadi Srikanth, a Google Cloud Platform product manager, in an Aug. 26 post on the Google Cloud Platform Blog. Terms of the acquisition were not released.

"Creating amazing special effects requires a skilled team of visual artists and designers, backed by a highly powerful infrastructure to render scenes," wrote Srikanth. "Many studios, however, don't have the resources or desire to create an in-house rendering farm, or they need to burst past their existing capacity."

That's where the acquisition of Zync Render fit in for Google, wrote Srikanth. "Together Zync + Cloud Platform will offer studios the rendering performance and capacity they need, while helping them manage costs," he wrote. "For example, with per-minute billing studios aren't trapped into paying for unused capacity when their rendering needs don't fit in perfect hour increments."

In a statement on its Website, Zync Render confirmed the acquisition and said that the move to join Google will bolster its services to its customers more than it could have done on its own. "Since its inception at visual effects studio ZERO VFX, nearly 5 years ago, ZYNC was designed to not only leverage the benefits and flexibilities inherent in cloud computing but to offer this in a user-friendly package," the company stated. "Pairing this history with the scale and reliability of Google Cloud Platform will help us offer an even better service to our customers—including more scalability, more host packages and better pricing (including per-minute billing). With a friction-free, affordable, and elastic rendering solution, visual designers and artists in the industry can continue to do their best work."

Following a transition period after the acquisition, Zync Render "will be back and better than ever on Google Cloud Platform," the statement said.

Rendering is the generation and processing of computer code and 2D and 3D models or images into the graphical images seen on screen in films. "To date we've been used as the render solution on over a dozen feature films and hundreds of commercials totaling over 6.5 million core hours completed," the company stated.

Google has been on quite an acquisition run in 2014. In July, Google acquired GPU benchmarking vendor DrawElements, a Finland-based company that specializes in software used for GPU benchmarking and testing.

Also in July, Google purchased music streaming vendor Songza for an undisclosed price as the company continues to look for ways to increase the competition with Apple and others for the music dollars of online users. The idea for Songza is to create playlists that match the many moods of its users. Users can let Songza's "Music Concierge" find the right music for their needs or they can browse a curated playlist library organized by activity, genre, decade and mood. Users can also stream thousands of original playlists that are made by music experts. Songza apps are available for free for Android and for iOS.

In June, the tech giant acquired imaging vendor Skybox Imaging for $500 million to aid Google's mapping efforts. That followed the May purchase of mobile-device management vendor Divide for an undisclosed price. The Divide deal was aimed at helping the company bolster and increase enterprise use of its Android-powered mobile devices in workplaces by offering increased security and compliance controls for businesses.

Also in May, Google announced the purchase of Stackdriver, a Boston-based company that was started in 2012 to provide cloud-application monitoring and data visualization services to users. On the same day, Google acquired Appetas, which helps restaurants build, maintain, promote and grow specialized Websites that serve the needs of the food industry. Google is shuttering Appetas as part of the purchase.

On May 6, Google acquired Adometry, a marketing and advertising optimization company that uses software-as-a-service-based advanced analytics to process and analyze tens of billions of impressions and advertising transactions per month to identify what consumers are buying.

In April, Google announced that it was getting into the high-altitude drone business with its purchase of Titan Aerospace in a move that is closely linked to Google's Project Loon efforts, which use high-altitude balloons to build a high-speed Internet network. High-altitude Internet networks have been on Google's radar since the company launched its Project Loon experiments in 2013, according to eWEEK reports. Project Loon uses a series of high-altitude balloons to build a high-speed Internet network that could be used to bring affordable Internet service to far-flung locations around the world for the first time.

Interestingly, Google announced back in March 2013 that it had amassed some $48 billion in cash that it would use for acquisitions, according to an eWEEK report.