Google Buys Stealth Hardware Startup Agnilux

Lots of talk this week about Apple’s 4G iPhone, after Gizmodo found a prototype left behind at a local watering hole. The device is believed to use an internally-designed application processor, just like Apple used with its recently-released iPad. Both chips were borne of Apple’s $278 million acquisition of P.A. Semi in 2008.

Many of P.A. Semi’s chip developers stuck with Apple, but others — including some system-level folks — launched a stealth startup called Agnilux. They also personally funded Agnilux with proceeds from the Apple acquisition.

Now, peHUB has learned that Google recently acquired Agnilux, which previously held strategic investment talks with companies like Cisco, Microsoft and Texas Instruments. We have not yet been able to confirm pricing terms, although assume it must have been a big deal to convince the Agnilux founders to shun the strategic investment — or traditional venture capital — routes so soon after founding.

We also aren’t quite sure what Agnilux was building, although the NY Times once suggested it was some kind of server. The name Agnilux is derived from the Sanskrit word for fire (gni) and the Latin word for light (lux), so that doesn’t really help push things forward too much. Company co-founders include Amarjeet Gill, Mark Hayter and Puneet Kumar.

A Google spokesman confirmed the acquisition, but declined further comment.