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Apple is investing $1 billion in Softbank's Vision Fund

Softbank's bid to finance new technologies just got a shot in the arm. 
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Reuters

At best, most consumers know Softbank as the Japanese phone carrier that owns Sprint -- but the company is much bigger than that. Softbank has its hands in robotics, smart vehicles, processors and more. It even invests in other companies, and recently set up the Softbank Vision Fund with the goal of pouring billions of dollars into promising start ups. Now that fund is getting another investor: Apple.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple has pledged to invest $1 billion in Softbank's Vision Fund. "We believe their new fund will speed the development of technologies which may be strategically important to Apple," spokeswoman Krisitn Huguet said. Softbank is expected to use the find to invest in smart objects, and IoT connected projects -- an area Apple has mostly stayed away from.

It's a good way for Apple to grab some stake in an area of technology it's otherwise left alone, but don't expect a lot more contributions from the company. When Tim Cook first commented on Softbank's fund back in July, he noted an investment might be incoming, but that it won't be "something that you'll see a whole string of from us."

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