Yahoo buying developer of Donna personal assistant app

The Donna service will be shut down after the transaction

Yahoo has entered into an agreement to acquire Incredible Labs, the startup behind mobile personal assistant app Donna.

The Internet giant did not comment on whether it was acquiring the company for its technology or for its talent, a trend popularly known as an acqui-hire, but said that five team members from Incredible Labs will join Yahoo's communications team in Sunnyvale, California at deal close, where they will work on Yahoo Mail.

The Donna app is also being shut down. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the next few days, Yahoo said.

"When we met with the team from Incredible Labs, it was an immediate fit," Yahoo said in a statement on Thursday. "As we look to the future, our visions are aligned in that we think technology should be smart enough to think for us."

Donna helps its users by reminding them of upcoming appointments, notifying them when to leave based on traffic, travel time, and the current location, and dialing into conference calls. "In case you haven't heard of her, Donna's pretty amazing - she has an immense amount of intellect, she keeps you on time and gives you the information you need, when you need it," Yahoo said in its statement.

But following closing, Donna will be removed from the app store and discontinued as a service, Incredible Labs said in a post on its website.

Yahoo has been on an acquisition spree, and earlier this week it said it was acquiring Tomfoolery, a startup whose key product is Anchor, an app offering group chats, file sharing, and email and voice calling for businesses. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said during the company's fourth quarter earnings call that it would continue to look for opportunities for talent acquisitions.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

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