Google's home-entertainment experiments extend beyond the gadget the company announced Wednesday, which turns TV sets into an extra screen for watching Web videos and other content.
The internet giant in January used the Consumer Electronics Show to privately show off a prototype of a previously unreported set-top device, similar to existing digital-media hubs sold by companies such as Apple and Roku, said people briefed on the device. These people said Andy Rubin, a Google executive at the time, led the demonstrations of the set-top box, which was powered by the company's Android operating software and had as a core feature Google's video-conference service, Hangouts. The device as demonstrated had a video camera and motion sensor, they said.....
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Google 'sGOOG+0.46% home-entertainment experiments extend beyond the gadget the company announced Wednesday, which turns TV sets into an extra screen for watching Web videos and other content.
The Internet giant in January used the Consumer Electronics Show to privately show off a prototype of a previously unreported set-top box device, similar to existing digital-media hubs sold by companies such as AppleAAPL+1.09% and Roku, said people briefed on the device.
These people said Andy Rubin, a Google executive at the time, led the demonstrations of the set-top box, which was powered by the company’s Android operating software and had as a core feature Google’s video-conference service, Hangouts. The device as demonstrated had a video camera and motion sensor, they said.
A Google spokeswoman declined to comment Thursday.
Google’s unreleased device is another indication that the living room has sparked a land grab by technology and media companies. Players such as Google Amazon.comAMZN-0.52%, Apple and IntelINTC+0.13% are jockeying with established media companies for ways to meld traditional TV with elements of the Web.
The fight could shape how people watch movies, TV and surf the Web and the fortunes of consumer-electronics makers, the entertainment industry, pay-television companies such as Comcast and the advertising business.
So far, however, technology companies have been longer on vision than on products people have purchased in large numbers. Google has had some notable stumbles so far, including a largely unsuccessful effort launched in 2010 called Google TV and the Nexus Q, a media-streaming device that Google announced a year ago but put on hold.
The Google device Mr. Rubin showed was different than Chromecast, a Web-to-TV connector Google announced Wednesday. The device, about the size of a USB drive, plugs into TV sets and lets people pick YouTube videos or streaming Netflix movies from their phones and laptops and display the images on their TV sets.
The people briefed on Google’s plans said the set-top box Google showed off in January had a broader set of features. One of these people said the device allowed people to stream YouTube videos, watch TV shows or movies from the Google Play digital-programming store, and access Android apps such as videogames or, potentially, digital media services such as Netflix and Pandora.
One of these people said Google had planned to launch the set-top box at Google I/O, the company’s software-developer conference held in May.
It’s unclear whether the device shown in January was scrapped in favor of Chromecast, or if it might eventually move forward in some form.
Google and other technology companies continue to grab for footholds in home television, which still commands the biggest chunk of consumers’ entertainment time. The Wall Street Journal earlier this month reported that Google has approached media companies to discuss a possible Internet-television service similar to cable TV.
Companies vying to play broader roles in Internet-based TV include Microsoft and Sony–in part through their videogame consoles–as well as Apple, Amazon.com and chip maker Intel.
Separately, the day after Chromecast went on sale, Google said it would stop a Netflix service discount that was a highly touted element of Wednesday’s launch. The company had offered three months of free Netflix service for people who bought Chromecast–lowering the effective price of the $35 device to roughly $11. On Thursday, Google said the promotion, which it said was available in limited quantities, is no longer available because of “overwhelming demand” for the Chromecast device.
It looks like Amazon has some more hardware projects up its sleeve.
Brad Stone at Bloomberg Businessweek reports, "[Jeff Bezos is] in Silicon Valley for most of this summer, working with Amazon’s hardware design arm, Lab126, according to a person familiar with the matter who wasn’t authorized to discuss it publicly."
That's all we get from Stone, so who knows what Bezos is working on.
Direct green laser diodes are an important step toward
powerful embedded projectors. The laborious way of
producing green light by doubling the frequency of infrared
laser is no longer needed. In particular, pico projectors
based on MEMS mirror (micro-electromechanical system)
will benefit from the small size and the high beam quality of
the single mode lasers. The laser diodes produce the right
green wavelength for projection and offer a sufficient
efficiency of typically 5-6% for battery driven applications.
The New Range Rover Sport, a world premiere today on the streets of New York, is the definitive premium sporty SUV - Land Rover faster, more agile and more responsive ever produced. The skyline of Manhattan represented the perfect setting for the debut of this new world, partly because the United States is the biggest market by number of units sold of this model, with New York at the top.
Developed together with the new Range Rover, New Range Rover Sport today boasts the best on-road dynamics of the brand, as well as performance all-terrainfrom the primacy of the category, typical of a true Range Rover. The New Range Rover Sport, a combination of technology, presents its customers with an exterior more determined and vigorous, a more luxurious interior and versatile option 5 +2.
Capitalizing on the innovative lightweight design of the suspension and the new technologies of the frame, the aluminum architecture of the new Sports - a record of the class - allows a weight saving of more than 420 kg *. This turns the dynamic performance of the vehicle, allowing it to combine agile handling in exceptional comfort in a luxurious mix of sporty and dynamic and engaging driving experience, as well as reduce emissions of CO2 to 194 g / km.
The new, modern interpretation of the Range Rover Sport completes the range of three models Range Rover.
Unparalleled range of capabilities, thanks to an on-road dynamics transformed and flexible and unbeatable all-terrain performance
Luxurious interior, versatile and superbly made, with the new option 5 +2.
The reduction of 420 kg * weight, as for the engine TDV6, results in agility and performance, in a 15% reduction of CO and fuel consumption significantly reduced.
Characterized Premium Range Rover chassis and lightweight aluminum architecture.
He made his debut with the new Range Rover Sport a technology package focused on the driver's Connected Car.
In a statement released before the official presentation at the Auto Show in New York, John Edwards, Global Brand Director, Land Rover said: "The New Range Rover Sport has been designed and built without compromise. And 'the vehicle with the most street-oriented we've ever made, but that naturally retains all the inherent capacity Land Rover, including all-terrain performance unsurpassed. The Sport is really born to be a wizard. With ride comfort, handling and agility that reach new levels, the leadership of this versatile and luxurious Range Rover Sport, it's really rewarding and sports.
"After the flagship Range Rover, recently launched on the market, the new Sport is equipped with a host of new technologies that can transform the performance, sophistication and capabilities in every situation," concluded Edwards.
Design: vigorous, decisive, strong
The New Range Rover Sport features a strong exterior design, modern, bold, which suggests a driving performance and clearly positions between the vehicle and the Range Rover Evoque, with which it shares the design DNA.
Gerry McGovern, Design Director and Chief Creative Officer of Land Rover, said: "The New Range Rover Sport is a premium SUV by definition. A Range Rover Sport for a new era: modern, sustainable, absolutely desirable. Beside the Range Rover and all'Evoque, the Range Rover Sport is the third pillar of the constant evolution of the Range Rover and a British brand characterized by an exceptional design " .
The new vehicle, brilliant interpretation of the distinctive design of its predecessor, sports a sleek and contemporary, in addition to a particular optimization of the interior spaces. The New Sport is only 62 mm longer than the previous, and yet, with its 4,850 mm is shorter than other seven-seat SUV and most of the E-segment sedans, and thus more maneuverable and easy to park. However, his pace considerably higher (+178 mm), offers more space and ease of access to passengers in the second row of seats.
The front and rear overhangs reduced and increased width (+55 mm) give the new vehicle a more modern look.
Stronger due to the angulation of the windshield, the aerodynamic profile and rounded and dynamic roof sloping line, the New Range Rover Sport is 8% more aerodynamic as the previous version (Cd 0.34). The New Sport is 149 mm shorter and 55 mm lower than the New Range Rover, on which the project is based and, for the same set up, weighs 45 kg less.
Although it was developed in conjunction with the Range Rover which has some points in common, the New Range Rover assembles 75% of unique components, many of which directly affect the aesthetics and guidance, giving the vehicle its new identity.
Identity that the customer can customize at will, from alloy wheels, available 19 ", 20", 21 and 22 ", including the iconic circle "Viper's Nest", for the first time offered on all Range Rover.
The widest range of capabilities possible for an SUV.
The driving dynamics on the road of New Range Rover Sport has definitely improved and the vehicle is more agile and maneuverable, but also more comfortable and refined. The independent suspension are made of aluminum, with double wishbones front and an advanced multi-link system at the rear.
The excursion of the wheels is record-breaking (260 mm front and 272 mm rear), for exceptional articulation of 546 mm which allows you to easily tackle even the most difficult situations. The maximum light from the ground increases to 278 mm (+51 mm), the air suspension system automatically varies between two ride heights, and the innovativeTerrain Response ® 2 automatically selects the most appropriate program.
The fifth-generation air suspension allow you to vary the height of no less than 115 mm, from the lowest position "access" (now increased to -50 mm, a decrease of 10 mm compared to the previous version, to facilitate the ascent and descent passengers) the standard height for off-road. An automatic function, activated by sensors, raise the vehicle by 35 mm when needed. The suspensions may also be further extended to other 35 mm with manual control, bringing the excursion possible to a total of 185 mm.
The suspension system, redesigned with the new intermediate height offroad +35 mm, allows to keep the mode Terrain at much higher speeds (80 km / h compared to the previous 50 km / h): a great advantage on long roads, bumpy or dirt.
The new power-assisted steering is lighter and more direct. It will be available the choice between two-wheel drive systems. The first includes a gearbox with two speed ranges, for the most challenging off-road, with a subdivision of default of the pair 50/50 and 100% bloccabilità.
The other, 18 kg lighter, presents a box of a single range of reduction ratios and Torsen differential, which automatically distributes the torque to the axle that has more grip, and works together with the traction control systems to ensure traction in each condition. The division of the couple's default is 42/58, with 58% to the rear axle, for optimum driving dynamics.
Engines: four at the launch and a new hybrid to follow
From the day of the launch will be available four engines - two petrol supercharged engines (the 5.0 liter V8 from 510 hp and the new 3.0-liter V6 with 340 hp) and two diesel engines (the 3.0-liter TDV6 SDV6 258 hp and 292 hp). The range will increase during the year with the arrival of a high-performance diesel engine, the 4.4-liter SDV8 from 339 hp. In addition, a new model diesel hybrid high-efficiency will then be available for delivery in 2014. .
Considering the whole range, acceleration 0-100 km / h starts from 5 seconds, fuel consumption is reduced by up to 24%, depending on the model, while emissions of CO 2decreased to a minimum of 194 g / km. All engines in the new Range Rover Sport are mated to the advanced automatic transmission ZF 8HP70 8-speed electronically controlled.
The weight reductions of the New Range Rover Sport open possibilities for the future introduction of a new engine smaller and lighter, as a four-cylinder, in a model that could weigh less than 2,000 kg, with a reduction of more than 500 kg compared to the previous lighter model.
Before the category for sustainability, thanks to its realization in aluminum.
The New Range Rover Sport is the first vehicle in its class with an advanced aluminum chassis, which not only means exceptional agility and driving dynamics, but also weight reduction and improved sustainability.
Developed in parallel with that of the New Range Rover, the structure of the new model uses a combination of aluminum panels and printed components in aluminum alloy rolled, cast and extruded, so that its resistance is concentrated exactly where the loads are applied higher. The vehicle floor is 39% lighter than the previous model.
In 2014 the high-performance sports will reach new heights with the launch of the new diesel hybrid ultra-efficient, with emissions of CO 2 of 169g/km.
All models in the range are equipped with a Stop / Start , which reduces fuel consumption by up to 7%.
Interior: modern and luxurious, with a strong sporty.
The interior of the new model shows the unmistakable Range Rover Sport, the attention to detail and craftsmanship in the execution.
True touchstone of the segment, the interior of the Range Rover Sport has a perfect blend of style and luxury, elegant lines, quality materials and a special touch of sportiness. The vigorous architectural forms are underlined by a more clean and pure surfaces, impeccably made with a generous use of soft-touch materials at key points in the passenger compartment.
The setting is reflected in the reduced diameter sports steering wheel with the crown increased section in the vertical shift, higher in the center console, lighting mood configurable and more generous dimensions of the side bolsters of the seats. The driving position combines the great sense of security and control of a Range Rover to a more sporty seat, similar to that dell'Evoque.
The interior has been optimized to create a wider cabin, and even more comfortable rear, with 24 mm more space for the knees. E 'available, on request, a 5 +2 seater, with a third row to accommodate two more passengers occasionally. These seats, electrically operated, are folded flush with the load floor, do not diminish the capacity and are split 50/50.
Technologies of the vehicle and safety equipment focused on passengers.
The New Sport has been designed as the vehicle without compromise, by definition, that fits perfectly to the lifestyle of the customer. His project includes all the available technologies targeted at the highest levels of comfort, safety and control for driver and passengers.
The technologies - new and improved - Sport of the system include Adaptive Dynamicscontinuously variable damping (CVD) and, on the more powerful versions, a mode Dynamicof Terrain Response ® 2 for an exhilarating driving on the road. This system is combined with the Dynamic Response (a control rumble technology with dual-channel), the active rear differential locking and by Braking Torque Vectoring , which transfers torque to the outer wheels of the curve, reducing understeer.
The New Range Rover Sport offers a complete package of connectivity between the client, his vehicle, home and professional activity. The technology "Connected Car" allows the driver to check the status of the vehicle via an app installed on your smartphone and tap into additional functions, such as Stolen Vehicle Tracking , the ' Emergency Call and Land Rover Assist Call . Finally, you can install on the vehicle a Wi-Fi Hotspot broadband, so that passengers can surf the Internet with the best data connection to their tablet or smartphone.
A new Head-Up Display Color, upon request, presents the driver with key information about the vehicle and navigation, without forcing him to look away from the road, using the excellent clarity and contrast of laser technology.
The new model introduces a digital camera system that manages three applications, driver assistance aimed at supporting the ability of the driver's attention: the Lane Departure Warning (exceeding the lane line), the Traffic Sign Recognition (recognition of road signs) and the 'Automatic High Beam Assist (automatic main beam assistance). Another innovation is the exclusive Sport Wade Sensing ™ , which provides information on the depth of the ford you are going through, especially useful on Sport, whose maximum depth of ford is today is 850 mm (+150 mm compared to the model previous year).
The New Range Rover Sport, with its increased versatility, is intended to replicate the outstanding success of its predecessor, which has become since its introduction in 2005, one of the most popular Land Rover vehicles, recording sales have exceeded 380,000 units.
The new Range Rover, designed in the United Kingdom at the Development Centre Land Rover, will be produced in the new factories - state of the art - Solihull (UK), which have a reduced environmental impact.
The new Range Rover Sport will be on sale, from the third quarter of 2013, in 169 countries.In most of these will be offered four trim levels (S, SE, HSE and Autobiography), in addition to new versions of Dynamic HSE and Autobiography. With a wide range of colors, details and finishes, the customer will have the ability to customize at will tailor their SUV.
Following many years of use in aircraft, head-up displays (HUDs) were first introduced to cars by General Motors in 1988 and are now offered, usually as an extra-cost option, by several major vehicle manufacturers. They project a virtual image onto the windshield and it is widely recognised that this enhances safety by proving vital data whilst the driver continues to view the road ahead.
Since their introduction, they have undergone several technological changes and one of the latest innovations involves the use of MEMS (micro-electromechanical system) technology. Based on techniques developed by the microelectronics industry, MEMS has been outstandingly successful in producing miniaturised, rugged and often inexpensive devices such as silicon sensors, print heads, microphones, gyroscopes and resonators. Automotive HUD systems are now being developed which exploit the capabilities of MEMS technology.
Today’s automotive HUDs are based on several different principles such as liquid crystal display-thin film transistor (LCD-TFT) technology and use LEDs as the light source but a MEMS-based HUD is very different, effectively being a laser scanning image projector. In contrast to existing systems, these use three laser diodes that emit red, green and blue light, and each is fitted with a lens to provide a beam with a very low numerical aperture. The light from these is then combined with dichroic optical elements into a single white light beam.
Using a beam splitter or other optics, this beam is directed onto the MEMS device. This is the heart of the system and comprises a microengineered 2-D micromirror (Figure 1) that scans the beam in a raster pattern. The projected image is created by modulating the three lasers synchronously with the position of the scanned beam. The silicon mirrors are small, typically around 1 mm in diameter, and are coated with a thin, highly reflective metal film of aluminium or silver with a reflectance of around 80-90 percent or more. They can be actuated in several ways, including electrostatic, the most widely used, and electromagnetic methods and because of single-crystal silicon’s excellent elastic properties and freedom from fatigue, they can be actuated at frequencies of up to 50 kHz.
As yet, only a few companies are involved with this technology. One is MicroVision, which uses a patented MEMS scanner as the core of its PicoP display technology. In the case of a HUD, proprietary optical elements direct the beam of light toward optics external to the PicoP display engine that ensure that the image is visible within the driver’s field of view. Pixels are created by a repetitive horizontal scanning motion that rapidly sweeps the light beam to place the pixels into rows and a vertical scanning motion that moves the light beam up and down to points where successive rows of pixels are drawn. This process continues until a full image appears. Because this happens so rapidly, the image appears to be static. The complete projection engine, also known as the Integrated Photonics Module, is just seven mm in height and has a total volume of less than five cubic cm. MicroVision’s display technology is just entering the HUD market, with the first volume product appearing this year in the “Cyber Navi” system from Pioneer, aimed at the Japanese car market.
Another company hoping to capitalise on the automotive HUD market is Maradin. Based in Israel and founded in 2007, the company has developed a similar technology which is based on a 2-D gimbaled micromirror (Figure 2) that uses a combination of electromagnetic and electrostatic actuation techniques to deflect laser beams at scanning angles of up to 32° at high speeds in both axes. This and an analogue and digital ASIC driver chip are integrated in a single package with dimensions of 5 x 15 x 4.3 mm. In addition to HUDs, the technology is well suited to applications in consumer mobile devices such as pico-projectors.
Figure 2. Schematic of Maradin’s 2-D MEMS scanning micromirror chip. (Image by Maradin Ltd.)
A further company that has commercialised MEMS micromirror technology is Mirrorcle Technologies, Inc. Based in California and founded in 2005, this company produces a family of 2D scanning micromirror devices (Figure 3) based on MEMS fabrication technology which arose from research at the Adriatic Research Institute (“ARI”) in Berkeley. Earlier this year, Mirrorcle demonstrated its technology at the Consumer Electronics Association (CES) trade show in Las Vegas. Using the patented emissive projection display (EPD) foils produced by Sun Innovations, which are able to transform scanning laser beams into a bright, fluorescent display of high-visibility “screen” images, the company used its devices to project a variety of vector graphics onto a car windshield treated with these foils, thus demonstrating its ability to address the automotive HUD market.
All indications are that the use of automotive HUDs will grow considerably over the next few years, reflecting several factors: technological developments, falling system prices allowing these products to migrate from the luxury sector down the product chain and growing safety awareness among drivers. According to an analysis by TechNavio (“Global Automotive Head-up Display Market 2012-2016"), the global automotive HUD market will grow at a CAGR of 28.61% over the period 2012-2016.
Whether MEMS technology will play a central role during this period of growth in uncertain; Denso, for example, is promoting a different technology involving an image reflected from an LCD and other companies are working on holographic techniques. However, when sensors first started to appear in cars, many were based on electromechanical technologies but MEMS sensors soon proved their worth and now dominate many applications in engine management and safety systems. Although MEMS-based HUD systems differ from these in that the MEMS component is only part of the overall system, there are reasons to be optimistic: MicroVision maintains that this technology scores over many alternatives as the brightness and contrast is better, allowing viewing in bright daylight and the colour saturation and overall image quality is better, too. All of these are critical considerations being addressed by the automotive HUD manufacturers and if MEMS can establish a competitive edge over the other technologies, its future should indeed look bright.
Written by Rob Bogue, Contributing Editor, Novus Light Technologies Today
- See more at: http://novuslight.com/mems-laser-scanners-in-automotive-head-up-displays_N1400.html#sthash.cdd3boWB.wf82qMYr.dpuf
As yet, only a few companies are involved with this technology. One is MicroVision, which uses a patented MEMS scanner as the core of its PicoP display technology. In the case of a HUD, proprietary optical elements direct the beam of light toward optics external to the PicoP display engine that ensure that the image is visible within the driver’s field of view. Pixels are created by a repetitive horizontal scanning motion that rapidly sweeps the light beam to place the pixels into rows and a vertical scanning motion that moves the light beam up and down to points where successive rows of pixels are drawn. This process continues until a full image appears. Because this happens so rapidly, the image appears to be static. The complete projection engine, also known as the Integrated Photonics Module, is just seven mm in height and has a total volume of less than five cubic cm. MicroVision’s display technology is just entering the HUD market, with the first volume product appearing this year in the “Cyber Navi” system from Pioneer, aimed at the Japanese car market. - See more at:
A few people got all excited about it. I do wish IR at the company would communicate a little more about things like this, but this was a simple expiration of some warrants, not a threat to the company itself.
Taken together, the leaks depict a phone that's less about the hardware specifications and more about clever uses of sensors, customized features and hands-free voice commands.
A new marketing video from Canadian carrier Rogers was leaked to the Internet last week -- it's since been taken down by YouTube -- and showed some of the phone's unique features. You can activate the voice controls by saying "OK Google" out loud, then ask for directions or give it other commands. It's similar to Apple's Siri voice-assistant feature or Google's existing Google voice commands, except that you don't need to press a button to activate it.
Active updates will push notifications to the phone based on your needs, location or time. Dennis Woodside, CEO of Motorola Mobility, said recently that sensors in the phone will anticipate users' needs -- for example, letting it know when it's being pulled out of someone's pocket. Finally, a twist of the wrist will trigger the Moto X's camera -- another feature for people who hate applying pressure to buttons in order to turn things on.
ABC News has reported that customers will be able to customize their Moto X phone in advance by choosing colors for the back and trim, adding engraving and uploading a photo so that the wallpaper is already personalized when the device arrives.
Great features, or just gimmicks?
So will all these bells and whistles be enough to set the Moto X apart from other smartphones? So far, analysts aren't convinced.
"I don't really think that there's anything I've seen so far that will really get the consumer crazy," said Carolina Milanesi, an analyst at Gartner. "A lot of the things you see are more gimmicks."
The leaked features aren't entirely new, either. The active updates seem like an expansion of the Google Now predictive search tool. Currently available on Android and iOS, it combines location and time information with data pulled from your search history, Gmail account, and calendar to show information that's relevant right then and there. For example, your boarding pass will be displayed when you're at the airport.
As for hands-free voice controls, Google previewed this feature at its Google I/O developer conference in May, comparing it to the voice-activated computer on Star Trek.
To become must-have tools for consumers, these features must work extremely well lest they become more of an annoyance. If users like them, hands-free voice commands, active alerts and the camera shortcut could theoretically be rolled out in future updates to the Android mobile operating system. Then they would work on other phones that also have the right sensors, stealing the Moto X's thunder.
Smartphones are constantly one-upping each other with incremental improvements -- higher-resolution screens, faster processors, pretty colors -- but experts say real innovation is stagnating. One of the few radically different features to hit the market of late is the 41-megapixel camera inside Nokia's Lumia 1020 smartphone.
Smartphone consumers are still waiting for hardware improvements such as significantly longer battery life (not just "it can last all day!"), wireless charging or durable, droppable bodies.
If these new features aren't enough to make consumers flock to the Moto X, the pricy marketing blitz Google has planned might do the trick. According to the Wall Street Journal, Google will launch a $500 million international marketing campaign for the device. The company will likely emphasize that the Moto X will be assembled at a new smartphone manufacturing plant in Texas.
Motorola's news followed similar announcements by Chinese computer maker Lenovo, which is building a manufacturing plant in North Carolina, and Apple, which has said it will begin manufacturing a Mac computer in the U.S. this year.
"It seems to be a trend but at the end of the day, consumers don't care as much (about where a phone is made)," said Milanesi. "What's going to be more important is the price and what the product is going to do."
Google completed its purchase of the Chicago-based Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion in 2012. The deal was done primarily to flesh out Google's patent portfolio with Motorola's 17,000 patents.
But there was always the exciting potential for a smartphone partnership between the two tech giants. Google makes the Android mobile operating system, Motorola Mobility makes handsets. In the flip-phone days of the early- to mid-2000s, Motorola was a leading phone maker with such models as its popular Razr.
Google released its flagship Nexus 4 smartphone earlier this year, which is manufactured by South Korean company LG. It's possible that Motorola could take over the manufacturing of the Nexus devices in the future.
The Motorola name had a lot of cachet a decade or two ago, but it's not clear whether that's enough to inspire brand loyalty from today's users. Many consumers may have forgotten about them. Either way, we'll find out soon.
MicroVision (MVIS) was one of the first micro-cap stocks I purchased. The company develops ultra-miniature projection display technology. The most exciting development, among many, is the mass production of an artificial green laser that allows MVIS products to be offered at a reasonable price.
MVIS has developed and patented technological products. For years, they had many revolutionary products that kept pulling the company in different directions. I met Alexander Tokman 2005, shortly after he was hired to manage the company. After an initial analysis, he decided to focus the company’s efforts on a limited number of products – mostly concentrating on the Pico projector.
The Pico projector (the size of a half dollar) can project an image two feet or 20 feet in perfect focus. The technology uses lasers. Only recently was a green laser available to be mass produced at a reasonable price.
MVIS introduced a feature “called Touch – Interactive Touch. So you basically can display an image and at the same time use your fingers to articulate information in the image.” For example, MVIS can project a keyboard from a Smartphone, and then the consumer can enter information to the Smartphone from the image of the keyboard.
On April 3, 2013, MVIS announced a development agreement with a Fortune Global 100 company that included an upfront payment of $4.6 million in fees. “The companies have begun commercial negotiations with the expectation that licensing and component supply agreements would constitute the next stage of engagement leading to the OEMs introduction of commercial products incorporating PicoP (MVIS) display technology,” according to MicroVision.
MVIS has shipped over 50 samples of their products to consumer product and automobile manufacturers. With the first agreement signed, MVIS is “making solid progress in negotiations with several other customers that have the following characteristics: (1) Must be a blue chip company; (2) must have a strong business structure – with multiple sources of revenue – software and hardware; and (3) must have a commitment to MVIS.
Ideally, they would share risk with MVIS. The customer’s and MVIS’s expectations must be compatible and MicroVision will negotiate for advance revenues in the form of license fees before the product comes to market.
MVIS has made giant strides. They have patents on the highest quality Pico projectors that can be delivered at reasonable prices. The market for Pico Projectors alone, aside from other products, is projected to be in the 100’s of millions.
Every small company must solve problems, one step at a time. Alexander Tokman, President and CEO, says that MVIS must now focus on developing their supply chain of products. It may take some time, but I believe this stock is now on the way to making a contribution to our profits.
On many of the message boards about Microvision, there are derisive voices who call those who are optimistic about the future of the company "pumpers." I offer this humble comparison of a pumper, vs a "realist" about another American Company.
"Mike Markkula is an American entrepreneur who was an angel investor and second CEO of Apple Computer, Inc., providing early critical funding and managerial support and has a net worth $1.2 billion. Mike Markkula earned his net worth as an investor and entrepreneur."