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Facebook scoops up tiny photo app company

We're going into photo editing ... bitch

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Facebook has picked up a small photo app company called Digital Staircase according to a blog post from the start-up.

It's a sign that Facebook are keen to shift into the photo/movie editing space which has proved so successful for Instagram and Hipstamatic.

"We're announcing today that we're joining Facebook," writes the Digital Staircase team, "where we'll help to bring these kind of mobile innovations to a broader audience.  Many things may change, but our dedication to immersive experiences will not."

This is likely to be a talent hire as much as a tech buyout. Digital Staircase's apps – MovieCam and Smart Splice – have shuffled around the 200s mark in the camera app leader boards on iOS. But founder Hamilton Chong completed a PhD in computer graphics at Harvard before starting up Digital Staircase, and as InsideMobileApps speculates, it could be his know-how more than any software that caught the eye of Zuckerberg.

Digital Staircase has three apps out in iTunes right now; these will be withdrawn over the next few weeks as the company is amalgamated into Facebook. Digital Staircase's photo app SmartSplice claims to use advanced graphics algorithms to greatly improve the speed and ease of creating high-quality image selections, it uses filters and translucency to create effects.

MovieCam is a camcorder app that provides recording features such as 8x digital zoom and allows you to add 18 movie effects and filters while shooting video. Stereocam is an app for creating 3D photos by stitching together two photos from an iPhone 2D camera.

Facebook's move to split up some of its mobile functions started in August, when it farmed out a separate Facebook Messenger app to handle IM on mobile. ®

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