Apple Inc (AAPL.O) agreed to buy fingerprint sensor developer AuthenTec Inc AUTH.O for about $356 million in a deal that could help the iPhone maker offer secure transactions in the emerging mobile payments market.
Apple, which had a cash balance of $117.2 billion as of June 30, has made a handful of technology acquisitions over the last few years to add unique features that end up defining its popular products.
February 2012 - Buys privately held based Chomp Inc, which provides software that helps sort the thousands of apps sold on Apple's App Store and Google Inc's (GOOG.O) Android Play store.
January 2012 - Buys Israel's Anobit, a maker of flash storage technology, whose chips it already uses in gadgets such as the iPad. Israeli media valued the deal at $500 million, though no official numbers were released.
September 2010 - Buys Sweden-based Polar Rose AB, a maker of face recognition technology.
April 2010 - Buys Siri Inc, later incorporated as the popular voice-activated assistant in the iPhone 4S.
October 2009-July 2010 - Buys map services providers Placebase and Poly9. Apple is due to launch its own map platform with the upcoming iOS 6, replacing Google Maps.
January 2010 - Acquires Quattro Wireless Inc, reportedly paying $275 million for the privately held mobile advertising company. Apple launches its own mobile advertising platform iAds the following fall.
December 2009 - Buys online music service lala.com. Launches iTunes Match in 2011, which makes use of Lala's cloud technology to stream music on the iPhone.
(Reporting by Himank Sharma; Editing by Anthony Kurian)