Apple acquires smartphone camera app SnappyCam

Apple has confirmed that it has bought the popular photo app SnappyCam, potentially bringing with it the award-winning founder and sole employee John Papandriopoulos to the company.

Bought for an undisclosed fee, SnappyCam was recently the number one paid app in Apple's App Store having only launched six months ago.

The $1 app's appeal stems from the specifically designed algorithm that allows users to take full-resolution photos at up to 20 frames per second, twice as many as the iPhone 5's "Burst Mode" allows. Other features include the ability to zoom up to six times and the ability to take pictures in different aspect ratios.

SnappyCam's website is currently offline and the app has been removed from the App Store, hinting that the app's features may be integrated into Apple's existing camera app.

"Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans," an Apple spokesperson told the Wall Street Journal, in what is seen as the company's standard response to confirm an acquisition.

Having Australian-born Papandriopoulos joining Apple could prove more interesting than the acquisition of the app, a highly acclaimed engineer who won Melbourne University's Chancellor's Prize for Excellence in 2007 before completing his PhD.

The prize came for developing an algorithm capable of reducing background noise in copper phone lines, effectively making it possible to deliver broadband at speeds 10-times faster than was previously thought possible.