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Volkswagen of America Continues to Support Development of Microvision Head-Up Display

New MicroHUD designed to meet size and performance specifications for future car generations

BOTHELL, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 2, 2004--Microvision, Inc. (Nasdaq:MVIS - News), a leader in light scanning technologies, announced today that it has received another order from Volkswagen of America Electronics Research Laboratory (ERL) to deliver an advanced prototype of the "MicroHUD" head-up display system. The new development contract, which is the third awarded by Volkswagen of America, continues prior efforts and supports the development of a compact head-up display designed to meet specific size and performance specifications for future car generations. The company also expects to receive an order from a major European Tier 1 automotive supplier to support the MicroHUD development program. The company expects to culminate the program with the installation of a MicroHUD display in a test vehicle later this year.

According to Todd McIntyre, senior vice president for Microvision, "Over the last several months Microvision has had a series of very successful deliveries of MicroHUD demonstrators to automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers for evaluation purposes. This new advanced prototype, however, is the first designed to fit within the smaller volume requirement that is being specified for future cars. We believe this order demonstrates the confidence that major automotive companies have in the potential of our laser scanning technology to deliver a unique and compelling HUD solution."

"We believe the reduced package size of our new MicroHUD offers the potential for compatibility with a wide range of vehicle makes and models. We have designed the unit as a standard module that can be easily reconfigured for different vehicles simply by replacing the final mirror. This should eliminate the expensive customization currently needed for alternative solutions. Another powerful feature is the display's unique ability to pre-distort the image to compensate for the varying shapes of different windscreens. This allows the image to be squared and aligned electronically, further reducing the cost of system design and installation.

"For the driver," said McIntyre, "MicroHUD is fundamentally about enhancing safety. As the level of information content in the car increases -- especially in navigation and telematics systems -- the challenge for automotive companies is to provide a safe means for a driver to access this content. The true win for MicroHUD is that it augments the driver's vision while simultaneously ensuring that the driver's eyes stay focused on the road ahead.

"Applications of MicroHUD extend beyond automotive and are expected to include package delivery and trucking services, police, fire and other public services, light aircraft and a wide variety of defense land and maritime vehicles as well as training aircraft and helicopters. For these applications, the benefits of MicroHUD's augmented vision are expected to include increased safety, precision and productivity."
One of the things that is so amazing is how the company's technology can applied generically to improve human perception. Augmented vision is not just for car mechanics -- anyone in any type of vehicle can benefit by see-through heads-up information. Anyone with a nav system embedded in the center console of their car will be able to tell you that while it's great to have, looking away from where you're going to consult the map creates an unsafe situation. At higher speeds, the amount of time you can spend looking at a map or rifling through a book of CDs is less and less. You simply have to look where you're going or else you are a risk to yourself and others. Seeing is believing with the MicroHUD. This will be big.


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