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Hi all, I'm back in Seattle after spending the last week in Edmonton, the second coldest city on Earth (Siberia FTW!). It was a thrill to be able to demonstrate our new gaming technology for the very first time to hundreds of gamers as well as many just plain curious folks. Two MVIS reps (myself and weapon master Andrew Rosen) + about 800 demos over 3 days = exhaustion! But, I'm happy to say that the response we got was tremendous, the Intel folks were terrific, and a lot of fun was had by all (as you can see from the picture!).

Be sure to read Critical Gamer's review of our gaming demo at Intel Extreme Masters!

Here are some excerpts:

This is a gaming website, and as such, your first instinct should have been “How well does this play games?” Well, I can honestly tell you that it is nothing like you imagined...Microvision is attempting to take PC gaming to the next level by possibly creating a platform to rival Microsoft’s own interactive gaming environment, with Project Natal.

What the demo showed us was future-tech that Microvision and Intel are trying frantically to bring home to the consumer: the ultimate in gaming interactivity.

What Microvision is trying to accomplish, is an entirely immersive experience...Microvision’s prototype hardware is concealed in a large, life-sized assault rifle powered by what you would find in your average high-end gaming computer.

For all intents and purposes, I think the PC gaming world has every right to be excited about this device and the future capabilities it may bring to the fold. While obviously marketed to a hardcore and niche market, let’s face it; that is exactly what PC gaming is all about these days. I am excited about what Project Natal might end up bringing to the table for first person shooters, but honestly, this tech demo left me drooling.



Hi all,

A few weeks ago, we let you know that one of the world's leading mobile operators had placed an order for our SHOWWX laser pico projector, and that additional information would be forthcoming shortly. Today, we're pleased to share with you that our customer is Vodafone. Vodafone issued their own press release today regarding their launch of SHOWWX, and here is an English translation:

Original Vodafone PR (Spanish)

VODAFONE SPAIN LAUNCHES MICROVISION’S SHOWWX Laser Pico Projector


The “SHOWWX” laser pico projector is an innovative laser portable projector that projects large size pictures as it connects to a mobile phone or a PC or a laptop computer


Vodafone Business and professional customers will be able to benefit from this innovative device via the Points Program or together with the Nokia Mini N97 Smartphone starting from 289 €.


Madrid, 1st of December, 2009. - Vodafone Spain launches the SHOWWX pico projector, an innovative portable projector thanks to Microvision Inc. (NASDAQ:MVIS), a global leader in innovative ultra-miniature projection display and image capture products for mobility applications.


The SHOWWX pico projector uses revolutionary laser-based display technology that delivers large, colorful, bright, and vivid images that are always in focus, regardless of projection distance


The accessory product is a simple plug-n-play pico projector for people on-the-go who wants to spontaneously view and share mobile TV, movies, photos, presentations and more contents. Customers can take the pocket-sized projector anywhere, plug it into their portable media players, mobile phones, notebooks, MP3 and other portable mobile media devices with TV-Out or VGA functionality and share a big screen experience with friends, family or business associates. Depending on the ambient light, the projected images range in size from 12” to 150”.


New customers can have this innovative device from 289 € (without vat). Customers also will be available through the Points Program, for example for a client with 1200 points, will be available for 247 € (this price includes permanence). SHOWWX also will be marketed jointly with the smartphone Mini Nokia N97.


Alexander Tokman, President and CEO of Microvision said: “We are proud that Vodafone Spain sells the SHOWWX for its customers. We believe that SHOWWX will provide a truly enhanced visual experience to Vodafone’s customers and greatly enhance functionality of their mobile devices.”


“The introduction of the Microvision SHOWWX laser pico projector in Spain presents a great opportunity for Vodafone to offer our customers new and exciting display capabilities to enhance the experience with their mobile devices,” - explained Ignacio Roman, Head of Terminals Spain and Portugal at Vodafone.

metaio launches World’s First Social Augmented Reality Platform: junaio



SAN FRANCISCO – November 11, 2009 – metaio today announced that users can now generate 3D augmented reality experiences on their iPhones by downloading junaio, a free application available in the Apple App Store. Users without an iPhone can also be part of the experience and edit/share 3D augmented reality images via the online platform on www.junaio.com

junaio is a mobile and online platform that lets users create, explore and share information in a completely new way using augmented reality and location-based content. Users can place 3D objects, twitter messages or websites into the real world and then share their creations with friends through social networks. Imagine you are able to take a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge and place an animated, 3D T-Rex gobbling up cars. These 3D objects can then be discovered by others who come across the same location. Or you can search for restaurants, cafes, museums, bars or shops etc. via Google local search and see the results in a 360° live-view of the camera.

With junaio, metaio is putting the power of its augmented reality technology – which has been used by industry giants such as Volkswagen, LEGO and Popular Science plus hundreds of other companies – in the hands of everyday consumers. The worldwide film company Focus Features has partnered with junaio to place memorable characters from its hit animated movies 9 and Coraline (the latter feature already available on DVD through Universal Studios Home Entertainment) on the platform to allow users to interact with the creations.

Unlike other applications that attempt to create new social networking communities, junaio is designed to tie existing platforms together with augmented reality based social interactions. Users can insert an (animated) 3D object into a photo taken with their iPhone and upload it to Facebook, or augment images that others have posted. The technology will soon be available on other smart phone platforms such as Android and Symbian.



Hi all, please find my presentation at ISMAR above. It was a real thrill to be a part of the show, to meet the people who are implementing cool augmented reality applications today, and to get a sense for the coming groundswell for this technology. As the name suggests, ISMAR is a global event and there were people there from all over the world, representing business, science, academia, venture capital and so on. I got the sense that next year's ISMAR would be absolutely huge.

It's clear from the discussions I had with various industry members that a see-through wearable display that meets people's expectations from both ergonomics and display performance is the big, obvious missing link in the AR solution story. We at Microvision are working hard to fill in this gap and create a technology solution that can allow this new market to take shape.

(On another note, during the dinner period, I brought out the SHOWWX and had a blast playing our standard reel of Britney and Christina videos on the walls, tablecloths and ceilings. There was a patio area, it was dark out, and I ended up projecting a gigantic Britney on the side of the hotel. It was awesome fun as you can imagine.)

Anyway, hope you enjoy the presentation and feel free to hit me up with questions (I'll do my best to answer them).

Thanks,
Ben

Microvision Receives Purchase Order and Begins Shipping World's First Laser Pico Projector, SHOWWX

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sep. 30, 2009-- Microvision, Inc. (Nasdaq:MVIS), a global leader in innovative ultra-miniature projection display and image capture products for mobility applications announced today that it has received a purchase order from its Asian marketing and distribution partner and has begun shipments of its PicoP® display engine-based product, the SHOWWX™ laser pico projector. Microvision expects its distribution partner to unveil its go to market product plans shortly.

“We are delighted to announce that Microvision has commenced shipments this week of the SHOWWX laser pico projector, our first commercial product based on the proprietary PicoP display engine,” said Alexander Tokman, President and CEO of Microvision. “This is a historical milestone for Microvision, accented by a purchase order that firmly kicks-off the first sales for the SHOWWX.”

The SHOWWX is a simple plug-n-play pico projector for people on-the-go who want to spontaneously view and share multimedia applications and programs such as mobile TV, movies, photos, presentations and more. Users can take the pocket-sized projector anywhere, plug it into their portable media players, mobile phones, notebooks and other portable mobile media devices and share a big screen experience with friends, family or business associates. Depending on the ambient light, the projected images range in size from 12” to 150”. The SHOWWX uses the revolutionary laser-based PicoP display engine technology that delivers large, colorful, bright, and vivid images that are always in focus, regardless of projection distance.

About Microvision, Inc.

Microvision provides the PicoP display engine technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company’s projection display engine uses highly efficient laser light sources which can create vivid images with high contrast and brightness. For more information, visit the company’s website (www.microvision.com) and corporate blog (www.microvision.com/displayground).

Forward-Looking Statements Disclaimer

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to product applications and market opportunity, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the Company's forward-looking statements include the following: our ability to raise additional capital when needed; the risk of market acceptance of our technology and products, our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our planned future products dependence on advances in technology by other companies, our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; our ability to secure needed third party manufacturing and sales resources, dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims and other risk factors identified from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.

Today, as reported in the Wall Street Journal, Microvision has been ranked #43 worldwide in the electronics & instruments industry for the strength of our patent portfolio by The Patent Board, the leading independent provider of best practices research, tools and metrics for patent analysis and intellectual property investment. According to The Patent Board, Microvision had a 29% increase in patenting and a 38% increase in Industry Impact™ this quarter.





Monday, September 28, 2009
Companies and private research firms are grouped by their Patent Board technology strength ranking which is based on the scale, quality, impact, and nearness to core science of a company's patent-based intellectual property. This overall strength rating factors in both qualitative and quantitative aspects of a company's patent portfolio.

About The Patent Board:

The Patent Board is the leading independent provider of best practices research, tools and metrics for patent analysis and intellectual property investment. The Patent Board’s team of experts, deep pool of knowledge and foundation in core research provides clients with valuable insight on patent-based IP strategies. The Patent Board leadership is advancing the value of patent knowledge to both inform business strategy and to help define patent assets as the next critical financial asset class.



DigitalBeat: Which augmented reality startups will dominate?

Augmented Reality — the ability to superimpose data and information over a view of the real world — is arguably hot these days, and there’s no scarcity of articles and blogs on the space and AR apps. VentureBeat first reviewed AR apps two months ago. As more time has passed I decided to take a deeper look at the technology, business models and utility behind the startups to separate hype from reality. To do so I talked to AR expert Robert Rice and interviewed the startups in the space in order to come up with a ranking of augmented reality startups (see chart below).

Microvision Announces Commercial Launch of SHOW WX Laser Pico Projector

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Microvision, Inc. (Nasdaq:MVIS - News), a global leader in innovative ultra-miniature projection display and image capture products for mobility applications announced the commercial introduction of the world’s first laser-based pico projector, called SHOW WX™, based on its proprietary PicoP® display engine technology.

The Company plans to distribute its accessory pico projector product through three sales channels: OEM branded products, Microvision branded products sold through international distributors and Microvision direct sales through its on-line store. Microvision has signed several marketing and distribution agreements with international distributors in Asia and Europe to launch Microvision branded and private labeled versions of the laser pico projector. Microvision expects to begin product shipments in the next several weeks.

The Microvision pico projector uses the revolutionary laser-based PicoP display engine that delivers large, colorful, bright, and vivid images that are always in focus, regardless of projection distance. The accessory product is a simple plug-n-play pico projector for people on-the-go who want to spontaneously view and share mobile TV, movies, photos, presentations and more. Users can take the pocket-sized projector anywhere, plug it into their portable media players, mobile phones, notebooks and other portable mobile media devices with TV-Out or VGA functionality and share a big screen experience with friends, family or business associates. Depending on the ambient light, the projected images range in size from 12” to 150”

About Microvision, Inc.
Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company’s projection display engine uses highly efficient laser light sources which can create vivid images with high contrast and brightness. For more information, visit the company’s website (www.microvision.com) and corporate blog (www.microvision.com/displayground).

Forward-Looking Statements Disclaimer

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to distribution and shipment of products, customer and distributor launch of products, product applications and statements using words such as “plans,” “expects” and similar expressions, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the Company's forward-looking statements include the following: our ability to raise additional capital when needed; the risk of market acceptance of our technology and products, our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our planned future products dependence on advances in technology by other companies, our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; our ability to secure needed third party manufacturing and sales resources, dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims and other risk factors identified from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.



Augmented Reality: What should businesses expect from this new tech?

The concept of Augmented Reality, or overlaying the real world with text or images seen via a mobile phone’s camera or a Web cam on a PC, has gained a lot of attention in recent months. Big tech companies, from IBM to Microsoft to Nokia are developing mobile-phone software and services in this space. Major retailers from Best Buy to Wal-Mart are using AR tech for the PC in their marketing campaigns. And numerous start-ups are developing cool applications that allow anyone to create tags for the real world. Yes: anyone can tag physical buildings or landmarks with informative text, like that found on a traditional Web page. The idea is to allow people to point their phones at, say, the Eiffel Tower, and see stats on when it was built or how tall it is, on their phone’s camera, in real time, instantly.

Nokia Mixed Reality



Here is Nokia's vision sketch of the future of mobile services, powered by eyewear displays. Note the emphasis on the need for the eyewear display to be see-through, and readable in daylight.



Reality, improved

AR, me hearties
It all sounds rather distant and futuristic. The idea of AR has, in fact, been around for a few years without making much progress. But the field has recently been energised by the ability to implement AR using advanced mobile handsets, rather than expensive, specialist equipment. Several AR applications are already available. Wikitude, an AR travel-guide application developed for Google’s Android G1 handset, has already been downloaded by 125,000 people. Layar is a general-purpose AR browser that also runs on Android-powered phones. Nearest Tube, an AR application for Apple’s iPhone 3GS handset, can direct you in London to the nearest Underground station. Nokia’s “mobile augmented reality applications” (MARA) software is being tested by staff at the world’s largest handset-maker, with a public launch imminent.


Here's a great article that describes the current state of the art of mobile augmented reality, and some of the technology underpinnings that will support an AR infrastructure.



Laser Focus World: Osram develops direct green-emitting laser diode

August 13, 2009--Osram Opto Semiconductors (Sunnyvale, CA and Regensburg, Germany) has developed a direct green-emitting indium gallium nitride (InGaN) laser diode that has an optical output of 50 mW in pulsed mode at a wavelength of 515 nm (true green is considered to be the spectral range of 515 to 535 nm). In pulsed-mode operation at room temperature, the laboratory prototype has a threshold current density of around 9 kA/cm². (Osram had previously developed a blue-green laser diode.)

[Note: Sumitomo Electric Industries (Hyogo, Japan) has also recently developed a true-green InGaN electrically pumped laser diode: its version operates at 531 nm, uses a semi-polar (2021) plane, and operates at an unspecified optical power. For more information, see the Laser Focus World September 2009 Newsbreaks.]

Compared with semiconductor lasers based on existing technology that operate with frequency doubling, direct-emitting green laser diodes are more compact, offer greater temperature stability, are easier to control, and have higher modulation capability at several hundred megahertz.

Good for picoprojectors

Even though small second-harmonic-generation-based external-cavity green lasers are readily available, the advantages of direct-emitting laser diodes make them better candidates for red-green-blue (RGB) displays. Blue and red-emitting laser diodes already exist; a green-emitting counterpart would make RGB laser "picoprojectors" much cheaper and easier to build, and feasible for use in cell phones and digital cameras.

As for Osram's green laser diode, the German Ministry for Education and Research is sponsoring the MOLAS research project (until March 2011, FKZ 13N9373), which involves technologies for ultracompact and mobile laser-projection systems. As part of this project, Osram Opto Semiconductors is developing efficient laser light sources based on InGaN for mobile projection systems. (Osram already offers direct-emitting blue InGaN laser diodes for commercial applications.)

--posted by John Wallace, johnw@pennwell.com

Microvision Reports Second Quarter 2009 Results

Company Strengthens Balance Sheet and Prepares for Launch of SHOW WX Laser Pico Projector

On Thursday August 6, 2009, 4:05 pm EDT

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Microvision, Inc. (NASDAQ:MVIS - News), a global leader in innovative ultra-miniature projection display and image capture products for mobility applications, today reported operating and financial results for the second quarter of 2009.

Operating Results

“We are pleased to have completed two very important milestones during the second quarter, the completion of a green laser supply agreement with Corning for our first PicoP® display engine based product, the SHOW WXTM laser pico projector, and a major investment by strategic supplier Walsin Lihwa,” stated Alexander Tokman, Microvision’s President and CEO. “We are also very excited about the recently announced agreement with OSRAM Opto Semiconductors for the supply of green lasers which are planned for commercialization in the fourth quarter of 2009. Securing a second supply source for green lasers, an integral component of our PicoP display engine, strengthens our go-to-market strategy and should enable increased product availability starting early next year.

“We are rapidly approaching the introduction of Microvision’s first product based on our proprietary PicoP display engine which is scheduled for later this summer. We are completing the product reliability and quality testing and we are validating manufacturing processes at our suppliers. Additionally, we are finalizing supply quantities that will be available to support our commercial introduction this year and as we have previously indicated, we estimate that the demand for the SHOW WX will exceed the initial quantities available in 2009. We are currently negotiating purchase orders with several global customers interested in introducing SHOW WX through their channels. We are making every effort to ensure that customers will be delighted with the SHOW WX experience. It is an exciting time for Microvision as we prepare to introduce our new technology and begin taking advantage of the large mobility market opportunity,” concluded Tokman.

During the second quarter, Microvision continued to supply PicoP Evaluation Kits (PEKs) to a diverse group of customers in the consumer electronic and automotive industries. The strong demand for Microvision’s tiny laser-based PicoP display engine continues as customers explore embedding the PicoP into a variety of host devices. The company plans to supply PEKs to selected customers through the end of this year.

In June, Microvision secured a $15 million strategic investment from Walsin Lihwa through the sale of common stock and warrants. Walsin Lihwa is the parent company of Microvision’s MEMS chip manufacturer. Since the 1990's it has invested in high-tech companies in the areas of electronic components, optoelectronics, printed circuit boards and semiconductors. Walsin Lihwa has a history of seeking growth through investments into companies positioned to take advantage of large, emerging market opportunities.

Subsequent to the end of the quarter, the company announced a $1 million subcontract award from Lockheed Martin to support DARPA’s Urban Leader Tactical Response, Awareness & Visualization (ULTRA-Vis) program, an advanced technology development initiative to build a soldier worn system. Under the subcontract Microvision has agreed to develop a daylight-readable, see-through, low-profile, ergonomic eyewear display based on its ultra-miniature PicoP display engine and proprietary thin, clear Substrate Guided Relay (SGR) Optics. This contract is important to Microvision’s long-term strategic roadmap, as it provides the opportunity to advance the company’s technology for a variety of military and commercial full-color eyewear applications.

Financial Results

“We continue to focus most of our resources on the commercialization of the first PicoP based pico projection product while aggressively managing operating costs and cash burn,” said Jeff Wilson, CFO of Microvision. “Cost reduction activities initiated in the first quarter of 2009 enabled us to maintain an operating loss for the second quarter of this year consistent with 2008, despite the lower revenue.”

For the six months ended June 30, 2009, the company reported revenue of $1.9 million compared to $4.2 million for the same period in 2008 and for the three months ended June 30, 2009, the company reported revenue of $987,000 compared to $1.6 million for the same period 2008. As of June 30, 2009, the backlog totaled $854,000 compared to $679,000 at June 30, 2008. The decrease in revenue is primarily attributed to lower backlog at the beginning of 2009, which is a result of the company's strategy to focus most of its resources on commercializing PicoP products.

The company reported an operating loss for the six months ended June 30, 2009 of $18.6 million compared to $16.4 million for the same period in 2008 and $9.5 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2009 compared to $9.3 million for the same period in 2008.

The company reported a net loss of $19.3 million, or $0.28 per share, for the six months ended June 30, 2009 compared to $14.3 million, or $0.25 per share for the same period in 2008 and $10.4 million, or $0.15 per share, for the quarter ended June 30, 2009 compared to $9.3 million, or $0.16 per share for the quarter ended June 30, 2008.

Net cash used in operating activities was $16.3 million for the six months ended June 30, 2009 compared to $14.9 million for the same period in 2008. Net cash used in operating activities was $7.6 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2009 compared to $8.8 million for the first quarter of 2009. The reduction in the quarterly cash burn was primarily a result of cost reduction efforts the company implemented in the first quarter of 2009. The company ended the quarter with $26.3 million in cash, cash equivalents, and investment securities.

Conference Call

Microvision will host a conference call to discuss its second quarter 2009 results and current business operations at 4:30 p.m. ET on August 6, 2009. Participants may join the conference call by dialing 866-356-3377 (for U.S. participants) or 617-597-5392 (for International participants) ten minutes prior to the start of the conference. The conference pass-code number is 17364883. Additionally, the call will be broadcast over the Internet and can be accessed from the company’s web site at www.microvision.com/investors. The web cast and information needed to access the telephone replay will be available through the same link following the conference call.

About Microvision

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company also manufactures and sells its bar code scanner product line which features the company's proprietary MEMS technology. For more information, visit our website at (www.microvision.com) and our corporate blog at (www.microvision.com/displayground).

Forward Looking Statement

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to future product introductions, availability and supply of key components, including green lasers, applications, business partnering expectations, sales, growth, business prospects and impact of cost reductions, as well as statements containing words like “expect,” “estimates,” “plan,” “could” and other similar expressions, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the Company's forward-looking statements include the following: our ability to raise additional capital when needed; the risk of market acceptance of our technology and products, our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our planned future products dependence on advances in technology by other companies, our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; our ability to secure needed third party manufacturing and sales resources, dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims and other risk factors identified from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.

Microvision Signs Multi-Year Agreement with OSRAM for Supply of Green and Blue Lasers

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Microvision, Inc. (Nasdaq:MVIS), a global leader in innovative ultra-miniature projection display and image capture products for mobility applications announced today that it has entered into a supply agreement with OSRAM Opto Semiconductors GmbH for the supply of green and blue lasers -- key components of Microvision’s PicoP® display engine. The announcement is the second Microvision has made in recent months regarding procurement of green lasers for use in the company’s PicoP® display engine and accessory pico projector product called SHOWWX™.

Following recent success commercializing its blue laser technology, OSRAM has fourth quarter commercialization plans for its green frequency doubled laser for use in Microvision’s PicoP display engine. OSRAM is one of the world's leading manufacturers of optoelectronic semiconductors for lighting, sensor and visualization applications.

“We see a significant market opportunity for pico projectors,” said Frank Moellmer, Vice President & General Manager, Business Segment Infrared of OSRAM Opto Semiconductors. “Our focused multi-year effort to develop efficient frequency doubled green lasers for consumer applications has positioned us to begin commercial production soon. We look forward to supporting the very large market opportunity offered by pico projection display technologies as developed by Microvision.”

“OSRAM has extensive laser development and manufacturing experience and we are pleased to leverage the significant progress the OSRAM team made in the development and commercialization of compact, high-speed blue and green lasers for our products," said Alexander Tokman, President and CEO of Microvision. “We look forward to continuing our strategic relationship with OSRAM to enable high volume PicoP based products and applications."

About Microvision, Inc.

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company’s projection display engine uses highly efficient laser light sources which can create vivid images with high contrast and brightness. For more information, visit the company’s website (www.microvision.com) and corporate blog (www.microvision.com/displayground).

ABOUT OSRAM OPTO SEMICONDUCTORS

OSRAM is part of the Industry sector of Siemens and one of the two leading lighting manufacturers in the world. Its subsidiary, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors GmbH in Regensburg (Germany), offers its customers solutions based on semiconductor technology for lighting, sensor and visualization applications. OSRAM Opto Semiconductors has production sites in Regensburg (Germany) and Penang (Malaysia). Its headquarters for North America is in Sunnyvale (USA), and for Asia in Hong Kong. OSRAM Opto Semiconductors also has sales offices throughout the world. In the 2008 fiscal year (to the end of September) OSRAM Opto Semiconductors employed more than 4600 people and achieved sales totaling 529 million euros. For more information go to www.osram-os.com.

Forward-Looking Statements Disclaimer

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to commercialization plans, future products, product applications and market opportunity, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the Company's forward-looking statements include the following: our ability to raise additional capital when needed; the risk of market acceptance of our technology and products, our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our planned future products dependence on advances in technology by other companies, our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; our ability to secure needed third party manufacturing and sales resources, dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims and other risk factors identified from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.



Kicking Reality Up a Notch

By LESLIE BERLIN
Published: July 11, 2009

People in Amsterdam who download a free application called Layar on their cellphones can look through the camera and see information about nearby restaurants, A.T.M.’s, and available jobs displayed in front of buildings that house them. This information is provided by companies like Hyves, the Dutch social networking site, and ING, the financial services company. The businesses pay a fee to SPRXmobile, the privately held company based in Amsterdam that developed Layar.

Layar is available in the Netherlands for phones running on the Android operating system developed by Google. Maarten Lens-FitzGerald, a co-founder of SPRXmobile, says it will be marketed later this year in the United States, Germany and Britain.

A similar product for Android phones, called Wikitude.me, provides information on 800,000 points of interest around the world, according to Philipp Breuss-Schneeweis, founder of Mobilizy, the Austrian company that developed Wikitude.me. Much of this content comes from Wikipedia, he said.

Applications like Layar and Wikitude.me, as well as projects in the research stage at Nokia, use a phone’s global positioning technology to determine a person’s location and use the phone’s compass to discern the direction the device is pointed. In this way, the phone can guess what the user is seeing. The augmented-reality application then pulls in information about points of interest in that sight line and displays it on top of the camera view.

For such location-based applications to become mainstream, they need access to vast amounts of data tagged with location information, said Blair MacIntyre, director of the Augmented Environments Lab at the Georgia Institute of Technology. “Ideally they’d want to hook in with the same database that Google Maps, or Garmin, or TomTom uses,” he said. (Nokia, it should be noted, owns Navteq, which provides map data and content.)

This tagged information could also come from users. Last week, for example, Mobilizy introduced a feature that enables people to add their own content to Wikitude.me.

In the future, researchers will need to come up with a way to compensate for the shortcomings of GPS-and-compass systems, which are not perfectly precise, Mr. MacIntyre said. He expects that this can be achieved through image-recognition technology. And people may want their augmented-reality view of the world to come to them not through devices they pull out of their pockets, but through some sort of wearable technology, like special glasses or contact lenses. Such devices are still in prototype stages.

“What we are seeing today in this area are baby steps,” agreed Ori Inbar, who writes the Games Alfresco blog about augmented reality and is a co-founder of two young augmented-reality companies: Arballoon, in Tel Aviv, and Ogmento, with offices in New York and Los Angeles. “People are really excited, though, because they are seeing the next steps beyond these.”

Augmented reality will “reinvent” many industries, including health care and training, Mr. Inbar predicted. Already, researchers at the Technical University of Munich are looking at ways to display X-ray and ultrasound readings directly on a patient’s body. A research project at BMW is exploring how an augmented-reality view under the hood might help auto mechanics with diagnostic and repair work.

In the short term, the industry that may have the most to gain from augmented reality is gaming. Although video games have traditionally pulled players out of the real world and into a virtual one, augmented-reality games have the potential to “engage people in the real world in a different way,” said Daniel Sánchez-Crespo, a project leader at Novarama, a game developer based in Barcelona. “It finds a new meaning for space. Your kitchen counter is not just where you prepare dinner; it can be a virtual racetrack for a car game.”

Novarama has developed a game called Invizimals that makes it appear as if the world is populated by formerly invisible creatures that can interact with one another. Sony plans to release Invizimals for the PSP handheld device this holiday season in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australia.

“The real world is way too boring for many people,” Mr. Sánchez-Crespo said with a laugh. “By making the real world a playground for the virtual world, we can make the real world much more interesting.”



$1m for seethrough vidspecs in DARPA VR war-graffiti plan

By Lewis Page

Posted in Science, 7th July 2009 15:33 GMT

Brobdingnagian arms company Lockheed yesterday passed on a million of its government greenbacks in a subcontract aimed at helping it achieve a new standard in interface tech. The cash goes to Washington-based Microvision Inc to develop "daylight-readable, see-through, low-profile, ergonomic" colour video specs.

The Lockheed-Microvision deal is part of a US military project named Urban Leader Tactical Response, Awareness & Visualization (ULTRA-Vis). It's intended to equip American combat troops not only with see-through video specs but also with a cunning "gesture recognition" interface allowing squad leaders to effectively scribble on the real world - for instance marking a door, and having the same mark show up in their teammates' specs as well.

“Microvision is very pleased to work with Lockheed Martin,” said Microvision veep Ian Brown. “By designing Microvision’s ultra-miniature PicoP Display Engine and our thin, clear Substrate Guided Relay (SGR) Optics into a wearable display, we have the potential to bring battery operable, low-profile, see-through, full-color eyewear displays to users. This eyewear display development could enable information content to be overlaid in the user’s field-of-view in operational environments, providing a critical information advantage.”

The PicoP teeny display gizmo is also used in pico projectors, vehicle displays and other kinds of wearable kit.

The ULTRA-Vis project comes, one need hardly say, from DARPA - the Pentagon's one-stop mad scientist shop. Apart from see-through vidspecs and gesture recognition, the final ULTRA-Vis should incorporate "voice and tactile command" interfaces, some sort of location system and a "head-tracking navigation unit" so that the video specs know which way they're pointing.

It would seem to be a race between DARPA and the smartphone app programmers for the futuristic wearable interfaces described by sci-fi writers too numerous to mention here.

There are more details on the ULTRA-Vis programme from DARPA here for those interested.



Microvision Announces $1M Contract Award from Lockheed Martin Corporation to Develop Low-Profile See-Through Eyewear Displays

REDMOND, Wash. - (Business Wire) Microvision, Inc. (NASDAQ: MVIS) announced today that it has been awarded a $1,000,000 subcontract by Lockheed Martin Corporation. This subcontract is part of DARPA’s Urban Leader Tactical Response, Awareness & Visualization (ULTRA-Vis) program, an advanced technology development initiative, whose objective it is to build a soldier-worn system that provides non-line-of-sight command and control in distributed urban operations for dismounted warfighters. Under the subcontract, Microvision will develop a daylight-readable, see-through, low-profile, ergonomic eyewear display.

DARPA has created the ULTRA-Vis program to bring real-time tactical see-through heads-up information to ground soldiers in order to increase their safety and situational awareness in urban environments. Although tactical information is available to ground soldiers today, existing head-mounted displays and legacy system architectures have prevented this information from being delivered in a low-profile, see-through iconic mode. When integrated to an advanced information management system, Microvision’s eyewear display could enable users to receive visual commands, view geo-registered iconic representations, and receive other full-color image content overlaid on their view.

“Microvision is very pleased to work with Lockheed Martin to advance the development of see-through eyewear displays in support of the DARPA ULTRA-Vis program,” said Ian Brown, Microvision’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “By designing Microvision’s ultra-miniature PicoP® Display Engine and our thin, clear Substrate Guided Relay (SGR) Optics into a wearable display, we have the potential to bring battery operable, low-profile, see-through, full-color eyewear displays to users. This eyewear display development could enable information content to be overlaid in the user’s field-of-view in operational environments, providing a critical information advantage. Additionally, this display could be used in other applications, where real-time content is needed to improve situational awareness, such as combat support and logistics.”

About Microvision

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company also manufactures and sells its bar code scanner product line which features the company's proprietary MEMS technology. For more information, visit our website at www.microvision.com and our corporate blog at www.microvision.com/displayground.

Forward-Looking Statement

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to product development, potential product benefits, and statements using words such as “expect”, “potential” and “could” are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the company's forward-looking statements include the following: capital market risks, our ability to raise additional capital when needed; market acceptance of our technologies and products; our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our dependence on the defense industry and a limited number of government development contracts; government regulation of our technologies; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the ability to obtain additional contract awards; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims, and other risk factors identified from time to time in the company's SEC reports and other filings, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.



Augmented Reality Startups Petition Apple for Live Video API

By KIM-MAI CUTLER of VentureBeat
Published: July 3, 2009

Augmented reality startups, which superimpose graphics and information on live camera feeds, say they are having difficulty releasing applications on the iPhone and may turn to Google’s Android platform instead. More than a dozen companies and research institutes have signed a petition asking Apple to offer an iPhone application programming interface (API) for manipulating live video.

Ori Inbar, who published the petition and has founded two augmented reality gaming startups (Ogmento and Arballoon), says the companies need the API so they can overlay graphics or information on the iPhone’s live camera feed, not just on recorded video clips.

Inbar says he’s developing a game for the iPhone but can’t publish it because he’s using a private API, which isn’t allowed because developers are supposed to use Apple’s published APIs.

Smartphones are a major frontier for augmented reality technology, promising to bring it into everyday use for gaming or for learning about a user’s physical surroundings. Before the technology relied on cumbersome stationary cameras and computers.

A few startups like Mobilizy and SPRXMobile place geotagged Wikipedia information or real-estate listings over buildings and spaces shown in an iPhone camera feed while other augmented reality gaming companies show 3-D animations interacting with the real world. Both Mobilizy’s Wikitude and SPRXMobile’s Layar augmented reality browsers are for the Android platform, not the iPhone.

“The battle to determine the winning device has already begun; a public API to access live video will give the iPhone a lucrative ticket to compete. We believe Apple has a window of opportunity of about 3 months before developers start looking elsewhere,” reads part of the petition.

Apple did not immediately reply for comment.



As you can see above, augmented reality is going mainstream. I believe that future generations of applications like "Layar" will be metadata engines delivering content on Microvision see-through eyewear. That way, you won't have to hold up your camera phone anymore. You can just walk around and see the information co-located with the real-world environment.

Microvision is positioned like no other company to enable this emerging category. There are a few reasons, but principally it's due to the power of scanned laser illumination, which gives us a very high brightness display, clearly readable in sunny conditions. As I mentioned a while back, we have built a benchtop demonstrator of our eyewear optical system (think see-through lens), that's mated with a PicoP to deliver a very high-brightness see-through display.

We continue to iterate and develop the optical system and how it interconnects with the PicoP, and we're excited about our progress. But what's key to building this market is establishing critical mass on the content and user experience side for consumer AR. The development of Layar, and its support from established players in the mobile phone space, bodes well for rapid adoption of see-through mobile device eyewear in the future.

Layar, worlds first mobile Augmented Reality browser

The World’s First Augmented Reality Browser. Layar is a free application on your mobile phone which shows what is around you by displaying real time digital information on top of reality through the camera of your mobile phone.

Layar is available for the T-Mobile G1, HTC Magic and other Android phones in Android Market for the Netherlands. Other countries will be added later. Planned roll-out dates for other countries are not known yet.

How do you use Layar?
By holding the phone in front of you like a camera, information is displayed on top of the camera display view.

For all points of interest which are displayed on the screen, information is shown at the bottom of the screen.

What do you see in the screen?
On top of the camera image (displaying reality) Layar adds content layers. Layers are the equivalent of webpages in normal browsers. Just like there are thousands of websites there will be thousands of layers. One can easily switch between layers by selecting another via the menu button, pressing the logobar or by swiping your finger across the screen.

We offer companies the possibility to publish their own layer in our browser(through an API). Currently several companies have already signed up for Layar and will publish their own content in their branded layer soon. We will share with you soon which layers will be available in your country.

Microvision Receives $15 Mln Equity Investment From Walsin Lihwa - Quick Facts

6/22/2009 6:19 AM ET

(RTTNews) - Microvision Inc. (MVIS: News ) announced that Walsin Lihwa Corporation, through its subsidiary Max Display Enterprises Limited, has agreed to invest about $15 million in Microvision. The investment is expected to be completed on June 22, 2009.

Under the terms of the securities purchase agreement, Walsin Lihwa's subsidiary will purchase 8.08 million shares of Microvision's common stock at a price of $1.8573 per share., which represents a 15% discount to the average closing price of Microvision's common stock over the 30 trading days through June 18, 2009.

Walsin Lihwa's subsidiary also will be issued a warrant to purchase 2.02 million shares of Microvision's common stock at an exercise price of $2.1850 per share, exercisable until June 22, 2012. Microvision would receive an aggregate consideration of about $15 million in cash.


Microvision Receives $15 Mln Equity Investment From Walsin Lihwa

Microvision, Inc. (NASDAQ:MVIS), and Walsin Lihwa Corporation (TSE:1605), today announced that Walsin Lihwa Corporation, through its subsidiary Max Display Enterprises Limited, has agreed to invest approximately $15 million in Microvision. The investment is expected to be completed on June 22, 2009.

Under the terms of the securities purchase agreement, Walsin Lihwa’s subsidiary will purchase 8,076,239 shares of Microvision’s common stock at a price of $1.8573 per share., which represents a 15% discount to the average closing price of Microvision’s common stock over the 30 trading days through June 18, 2009. Walsin Lihwa’s subsidiary also will be issued a warrant to purchase 2,019,060 shares of Microvision’s common stock at an exercise price of $2.1850 per share, exercisable until June 22, 2012. Microvision would receive an aggregate consideration of approximately $15 million in cash.

Walsin Lihwa is the parent company of Touch Micro-system Technology Corp. (TMT), a leading provider of micro-electro mechanical system (MEMS) technology platforms. Microvision has worked for a number of years with both Walsin Lihwa and then TMT, as manufacturers of Microvision’s MEMS chips. Walsin Lihwa is a leading manufacturer of copper wire, specialty steel and power cables and wire in the Greater China region and has invested in high-tech companies since the 1990s, including in the areas of electronic components, optoelectronics, printed circuit boards and semiconductor ventures.

"Walsin Lihwa continues to seek further growth based on innovations,” said Yu-Lon Chiao, Chairman of Walsin Lihwa. "We believe Microvision is well positioned with its PicoP technology to take advantage of large, emerging market opportunities.”

"We are pleased to welcome Walsin Lihwa as an investor to Microvision in addition to being a key enabling strategic supply chain partner in our go-to-market strategy,” said Alexander Tokman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Microvision. "We look forward to continuing the strong working relationship we have developed with Walsin Lihwa over the years.”

Microvision has agreed to register the shares of its common stock sold as part of this transaction, and register the shares of its common stock issuable upon exercise of the warrant for resale under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended. The securities have not been registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent registration under such act and applicable state securities laws or an applicable exemption from those registration requirements.

About Microvision

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company also manufactures and sells its bar code scanner product line which features the company's proprietary MEMS technology. For more information, visit our website at www.microvision.com and our corporate blog at www.microvision.com/displayground.

About Walsin Lihwa

Walsin Lihwa has become a leading manufacturer of bare copper wire, wire and cable, and specialty steel in the Greater China region, and has also expanded into the high-tech industry and become an international enterprise. With its copper wires, power and communication cables as well as specialty steel widely used in a range of infrastructure projects, the company now has annual revenues of over NT$150 billion and over 6,500 employees.

Forward Looking Statement

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to future business prospects, as well as statements containing words like "believe,” and other similar expressions, are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the Microvision’s forward-looking statements include the following: the risk of market acceptance of our technology and products; our ability to raise additional capital when needed; our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our planned future products dependence on advances in technology by other companies; our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; our ability to secure needed third party manufacturing and sales resources, dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims and other risk factors identified from time to time in the Microvision’s SEC reports, including the Microvision’s Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, Microvision undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.


Projection Summit 2009

Hi everyone,

Hope everyone is doing great out there. I'm getting ready to head off to Orlando (94 degrees and thunderstorms!) for this year's Projection Summit. I'll be talking about the 3D display market, and some of the ways that Microvision technology can address it. So, it should be a fun trip, and I'm excited to participate. Here's the abstract to my presentation:

3D Content Meets 3D Laser Projector
3D content is proliferating rapidly. Movies, games and increasingly live sports and concert films are being filmed in 3D. One unique challenge facing this emerging category is the lack of in-home 3D displays. 120 hz LCD panels and plasma screens typically require shutter glasses for viewing 3D content, but next generation display technologies employ passive 3D glasses, which are lighter weight, lower cost and more acceptable to the wearer. Microvision's laser scanning pico projector platform enables 3D content in the home, viewed through lightweight passive glasses, without the purchase of a new, large, expensive flat panel monitor. During this presentation, we will address the burgeoning 3D content market and the unique value proposition for a mobile 3D laser projector.



Turning Cell Phones Into Projectors

Turning Cell Phones Into Projectors
Elizabeth Corcoran, 05.20.09, 06:00 PM EDT
Forbes Magazine dated June 08, 2009

Put a projector in your pocket.

Transistors soak up much limelight in the digital world. But the backstage heroes are lasers: Red lasers brought us compact discs and cheap long-distance communications. Blue lasers, which cram even more data into a small spot, became a hit around 1999 and have made possible Blu-ray DVDs.

Now comes the third color needed to create a vibrant picture: green. In early May Corning ( GLW - news - people ) said it had finally licked production problems in creating "synthetic" green lasers. Tiny video projectors using Corning's components could reach the market by autumn. The goal: packing a brilliantly sharp video projection system into a cell phone.

Coloring the dreams of technologists now, however, are exquisitely tiny low-cost projectors, ones small enough to tuck inside a mobile phone or even a pair of glasses. To affordably make projectors on that scale, the industry is pushing technology further--including turning to lasers that will emit green light.
Corning started making lasers in earnest in the late 1990s as an element of its fiber-optic telecom business. The firm scooped up some of the technical talent that had created the optical amplifiers and other components that made long-distance lines cheap: scientists who had previously worked for Bellcore and AT&T Bell Labs during those labs' heyday.

Corning spent another three years refining its green lasers. The development effort has absorbed tens of millions of dollars, says Newhouse. "Keeping a laser fab is not inexpensive," he says. Competitors are afoot: A few high-end synthetic green lasers exist. Germany's Osram is close to finishing its own version of a synthetic green laser intended for mass production.

Demand for these devices is expected to be voracious. Market research company Insight Media predicts sales of embedded tiny projectors (i.e., small enough for a cell phone) could be $1.1 billion by 2012. Stand-alone "pico projectors" that plug into a laptop may hit $2.5 billion, notes Insight President Christopher Chinnock. At the Consumer Electronics Show in January a half-dozen companies, including cell phone and laptop makers, showed off gadgets with embedded projectors. In April Samsung said it was shipping a mobile phone with an embedded projector to customers in Korea. (That phone uses ti's DLP projection technique.) Nokia ( NOK - news - people ) and Motorola ( MOT - news - people ) have designs in the works, too.

Microvision ( MVIS - news - people ) in Seattle is putting Corning's green laser into its microprojector "display engine," which it aims to sell for a few hundred dollars to gadgetmakers.

"How many times are you looking at the information on your cell phone and you say, 'If I could have a larger screen this would be so much more enjoyable'?" asks Microvision Chief Alexander Tokman.

Tokman rattles off the specs of Microvision's widget, which he says will be shipping by late summer. It will measure 5 cubic centimeters, the volume of a teaspoon. Its power draw is modest, making it possible for a device the size of a smart phone to project a 90-minute movie on one battery charge. The picture it displays is bright and clear, casting a crisp 1-foot-diameter image on a wall 1 foot away and an equally sharp 6-foot-diameter image on a wall 6 feet away. Once Microvision is making large volumes of its component, Tokman believes, the devices will cost equipment makers $100 apiece. Carriers might even choose to subsidize that expense to spur consumers to spend more on movies and photos, he says.

Microvision, which went public in 1996, has had a roller-coaster history of promising sci-fi-like devices--such as head-mounted displays--that it has had trouble delivering. Still, the number of companies scrambling to hit the green button suggests that this trend has a bright future.

Corning and Microvision Announce Agreement for Supply of Green Lasers for Microprojectors

CORNING, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Corning Incorporated (NYSE: GLW - News) and Microvision, Inc. (NASDAQ: MVIS - News) announced today that the companies have entered into a supply agreement under which Corning will supply its G-1000 green lasers to Microvision, as a key component of Microvision’s PicoP™ enabled microprojector accessory product.

Laser-based microprojectors have a unique combination of features that are optimal for mobile device users, including infinite focus, rich color, and high contrast and resolution. Corning’s synthetic green lasers, optimized for use as a light source in these display devices, play a critical role in this rapidly emerging mobile-display market by providing customers with a visually rich multimedia experience.

"We are pleased to be able to work with Microvision, a key player in the projection-display industry, to spearhead the introduction of laser-based microprojectors in 2009,” said Thomas Mills, general manager, Corning Green Lasers. “This is an important strategic growth opportunity for the advancement of microprojection technology and Corning’s industry-leading green lasers. The G-1000 green laser is a high-quality, compact, and efficient light source optimized for this exciting application.”

“Corning has been a pioneer in the rapid advancement of green laser technology, from development through commercialization,” said Alexander Tokman, president and chief executive officer, Microvision. “This agreement represents a major supply chain milestone in the commercialization roadmap of our accessory picoprojector product, and we are pleased to be working with the Corning team on creating new business- and entertainment-use models for people who are constantly on the go.”

About Corning Incorporated

Corning Incorporated (www.corning.com) is the world leader in specialty glass and ceramics. Drawing on more than 150 years of materials science and process engineering knowledge, Corning creates and makes keystone components that enable high-technology systems for consumer electronics, mobile emissions control, telecommunications and life sciences. Our products include glass substrates for LCD televisions, computer monitors and laptops; ceramic substrates and filters for mobile emission control systems; optical fiber, cable, hardware & equipment for telecommunications networks; optical biosensors for drug discovery; and other advanced optics and specialty glass solutions for a number of industries including semiconductor, aerospace, defense, astronomy and metrology.

About Microvision, Inc.

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company’s projection display engine uses highly efficient laser light sources which can create vivid images with high contrast and brightness. For more information, visit the company’s website (www.microvision.com) and corporate blog (www.microvision.com/displayground).

In April 2008, Microvision delivered an SD3000 helmet mounted display to our customer. This see-through, full-color system is clearly readable in broad daylight offering high-resolution images displaying real-time battlefield information including maps, navigation and target related data.

In order to offer customers a see-through display with a smaller form factor, improved ergonomics, and a broader field of view, Microvision is developing a thin, lightweight eyewear lens system with images focused at infinity. This means that images appear at a distance even though the display is very close to the user's eye.

I'm pleased to share with you that we have designed and made a new bench top demonstrator of this lens system, that, when combined with the tiny PicoP® display engine, displays see-through, full-color images. Ultimately, we expect that this lens system can be embedded along with the PicoP display engine inside of lightweight eyewear.

Embedded eyewear products have always been a planned extension of our PicoP display engine technology, and this new lens system represents an important milestone on our path to deliver personal eyewear display products.

This combination of the PicoP display engine and our new lens system is expected to enable personal head-up displays that give the user visual information anytime, anywhere, while maintaining an unobstructed view of the physical environment. Potential uses include fashionable eyewear displays for mobile users, as well as military, medical and industrial applications.

Heya



IEEE Spectrum Battle Royale on Micro-projectors

Check out this video, featuring your correspondent.

Also, be sure to check out this blog post by Intel's Craig Hurst describing some cool augmented reality application scenarios.



Green Lasers: The Next Innovation in Chip-Based Beams

On a rainy Saturday morning in January 2007, Henry Yang, chancellor of the University of California, Santa Barbara, took an urgent phone call. He excused himself abruptly from a meeting, grabbed his coat and umbrella, and rushed across the windswept U.C.S.B. campus to the Solid State Lighting and Display Center. The research group there included one of us (Nakamura), who had just received the Millennium Technology Prize for creating the first light-emitting diodes (LEDs) that emit bright blue light. Since that breakthrough over a decade earlier, Nakamura had continued his pioneering research on solid-state (semiconductor) lighting, developing green LEDs and the blue laser diodes that are now at the core of modern Blu-ray disc players.


Check out this article that describes advances being made in the development of green laser diodes -- these are green lasers about the size of a pin head, which will enable our PicoP engine to reduce its physical footprint significantly.



Take a look at this video from MIT Media Lab that shows the future of integrated micro-projectors as part of an augmented reality infrastructure. Pretty awesome stuff.





Hey everybody,

I'm excited to share with you these photographs from Intel's booth at CeBIT in Hannover, Germany (booth #P33). Our SHOW WX projector is taking a feed from a microscope that's looking at the Intel Core2 Die, and projecting that image onto a tabletop.

CeBIT is the world's largest trade fair showcasing digital IT and telecommunications solutions for home and work environments. The key target groups are users from industry, the wholesale/retail sector, skilled trades, banks, the services sector, government agencies, science and all users passionate about technology.

These guys, put simply, totally rock. I've had the good fortune to accompany these guys on various trips to show off some of their cool inventions. It's definitely my favorite part of this kind of work -- seeing first hand the reactions of people to the stuff that we've been working on. It's funny -- Microvision seems to attract people with an extreme degree of creativity, focus and drive. We have been all over the place together and I have to tell you, the amount of energy they can put out is truly awesome. Thanks fellas!!!

Gear of the Year



Microvision Show WX

Tired of squinting at videos on a tiny handset? Connect your phone or laptop to Microvision's pocket-size projector to display photos, movies and more on the wall — at image widths of six to 100 inches. Roughly 4.5 inches by 2 inches and just 0.5 inch thick, the Show WX is a fraction of the size of most business projectors, yet it can project DVD-quality images in wide-screen format. Road warriors can take their dog-and-pony shows anywhere — without feeling like a pack mule. Still just a prototype, but expected to go into production this spring.

Available: Second half of the year

Price: $300 to $500



This video is from 2008, but I had not seen it before today. Hope you enjoy it.
Here's Dr. Joseph A. Miller, Jr. Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Corning, discussing Microvision's technology and its competitive advantages. Have a great weekend.



Mini laser for mini projectors

OSRAM's blue laser diode
An optimized TO38 package makes the blue laser diode from OSRAM Opto Semiconductors the smallest in its class. This takes the world one step closer to a vision of tiny projectors that can be integrated into mobile devices such as cell phones and digital cameras. Lasers are the first choice as light sources for these applications. They convert mobile devices into high-performance multifunctional devices that can not only record images but also present them in razor sharp detail.

With the development of the blue laser OSRAM Opto Semiconductors is another step closer to the vision of a projector integrated in a cell phone.

The blue laser has a wavelength of 450 nm and an output of 50 mW. The voltage is 5.5 V, and the slope efficiency 0.9 W/A. It combines all the important properties for mini projectors such as small size, high efficiency and good visibility of the blue light. As a ridge laser it also has an excellent beam quality and therefore needs only relatively simple small optics to shape the beam. According to Dr. Thomas Höfer, Head of Laser Projection at OSRAM Opto Semiconductors, “Our newly developed blue laser is a further step in our quest to enable miniaturized projectors that can be fully integrated in mobile devices.”

Mobile devices currently available on the market can produce and download high-quality photos and video clips. Integrated laser projectors will enable this content to be viewed also in high quality on almost any surface.

Lasers represent the next milestone in the development of mobile devices and have a promising future in terms of integrating projection modules. They will be appreciated by end customers for their extremely low power requirements and compact dimensions. They also offer exceptionally vibrant colors and high contrast, and they always produce sharp images irrespective of the distance over which the images are projected.

OSRAM Opto Semiconductors is also developing red and green lasers. The red laser, like the blue laser, will be designed as a direct semiconductor laser. Green lasers will be implemented using frequency doubling.

Hi all,

I posted an update to Microvision's corporate blog, the Displayground, today...here it is!

Thanks,
Ben

Microvision Awarded $750,000 Contract to Develop High-Definition Prototype Display Engine for the U.S. Army

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Microvision, Inc. (Nasdaq: MVIS - News), announced today that it has been awarded a $750,000 contract by Battelle Chapel Hill Operations as prime contractor for the U.S. Army, to develop and demonstrate a prototype of its PicoP projection display engine capable of delivering high-definition 720p resolution (1280 x 720 pixels). This new display would more than double the resolution of Microvision’s current WVGA (848 x 480 pixels) PicoP display engine while still maintaining its ultra-miniature form factor. This contract represents the second customer in the last two months to enter into an agreement with the Company to develop a high definition PicoP based display application.

The Army is interested in developing high resolution capabilities from a tiny projection display engine to support future development of high-definition wearable displays for soldiers, as well as future mobile projectors for wireless hand-held devices, including mobile phones. Under the 12-month development contract, Microvision will deliver a demonstration prototype of the high-definition PicoP display engine to the Army.

According to Alexander Tokman, Microvision president and CEO, “It is not a secret that higher resolution devices yield richer viewing experience, and nowhere is this more relevant than in military applications where rapid processing of information-rich content could improve the situational awareness and safety of soldiers. The work performed under this contract is synergistic with our PicoP technology maturation roadmap. We are already able to deliver a WVGA PicoP display engine for consumer and military applications, and now with funding from the Army we have the opportunity to advance our proprietary PicoP platform to the next levels of performance without compromising its small footprint.”

About Microvision http://www.microvision.com

Microvision provides the PicoP display technology platform designed to enable next-generation display and imaging products for Pico projectors, vehicle displays, and wearable displays that interface with mobile devices. The company also manufactures and sells its bar code scanner product line which features the company's proprietary MEMS technology.

Forward-Looking Statement

Certain statements contained in this release, including those relating to product development, potential product benefits, and statements using words such as “would,” “expected” and “could” are forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the company's forward-looking statements include the following: capital market risks, our ability to raise additional capital when needed; market acceptance of our technologies and products; our financial and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our ability to keep up with rapid technological change; our dependence on the defense industry and a limited number of government development contracts; government regulation of our technologies; our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the ability to obtain additional contract awards; the timing of commercial product launches and delays in product development; the ability to achieve key technical milestones in key products; dependence on third parties to develop, manufacture, sell and market our products; potential product liability claims, and other risk factors identified from time to time in the company's SEC reports and other filings, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in circumstances or any other reason.



Macworld Expo: Microvision projector kicks up interest

by Michael Rose on Jan 13th 2009

It's not available for purchase yet, but the tiny Microvision Pico projector on display at Macworld Expo definitely made an impact. The device -- roughly the size and weight of an iPhone -- throws a clear and sharp WVGA (848x480) image across a table or a room onto any light-colored surface.

With VGA and composite video inputs, it's a perfect match for portable media players of any sort, or road-warrior presentation needs for small audiences. Battery power is slated to last about 2 hours (90 minutes on the prototype) and it charges over USB. A laser-based projection technology creates images that never need focusing, regardless of the throw distance.

Microvision expects to ship the Pico device in the middle of 2009, with pricing not yet finalized ("at or under $500" is the expectation). We got a little bit of hands-on time in the video below. Note that the scan pattern visible when the projection is in frame is an artifact of the camera's scan rate -- the actual projected image looks great. You can also see some fascinating "unofficial" experiments using a Pico projector at the underground Pico blog.

Pocket-sized home theaters make debut

LAS VEGAS, NV (KGO) -- One of the biggest trends at the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was the home-theater-in-your-pocket.

One of the latest categories of consumer electronics is one called Pico Projectors.
Just a few feet away from the world's largest home theaters screens at 150 inches, the world's smallest home theaters were unveiled. Smaller than mini and smaller than micro, they are called Pico Projectors.

About the size of an iPhone, they run on batteries and can project an image the size of a 42-inch plasma in a bright room.

Ian Brown of Microvision, which makes a laser version, says, "As we imagine the social networking phenomenon increasing, I would think many, many people will be sharing videos, sharing photos, that kind of thing with these."

[The lasers] are so small, the whole projector mechanism could fit into a matchbook. Developed by Microvision of Redmond, Washington, the laser system provides more colors and does not need to be focused.

"As we look out further," Brown projects, "if these tiny engines get smaller even still, we could imagine to get them inside cell phones themselves. So we have one single device, if you like, that people carry around with them."

When the first one is built into a phone, you'll see it here at ABC7.

Cool stuff from this year’s Macworld Expo

Cool stuff from this year’s Macworld Expo
By BOB LeVITUS For the Chronicle
Jan. 12, 2009, 9:23PM

I spent last week in San Francisco at Macworld Expo.

Let me tell you about some of the cool things I saw last week.

My favorite product at the show was Microvision’s way-cool SHOW WX Pico Projector (www.microvision.com/showwx/). Smaller than an iPhone, it’s a tiny video projector that uses laser light rather than lamps or LEDs to project an image from 6 inches to 100 inches and is always in focus on any light-colored surface. It looks incredible and should be available later this year for under $500.

Bob LeVitus is the author of over 50 computer books including Mac OS X Leopard For Dummies, and a Mac consultant, troubleshooter, and trainer. Visit his Web site at www.boblevitus.com; e-mail comments to doc@boblevitus.com.





[CES 2009] Microvision Pico Projector Trumps All With Frikkin’ Lasers

By Evan Ackerman

At CES last year, we saw a prototype of Microvision’s PicoP miniature laser-based projector. Back then, I was told that the production version would most likely use LEDs, instead. I guess they decided that lasers would just be that much more awesome, because we got a look at the production version of the Microvision PicoP yesterday, and it’s absolutely laserriffic.

The PicoP uses red, green, and blue lasers to project a WVGA (848 x 480) 16:9 widescreen image with 10 lumens of brightness and a contrast ratio of better than 5,000 to 1. It was adequately bright under ambient show floor lightning, and substantially brighter than any of the other micro projectors we’ve seen this week. In a dark room it projects a tolerable image up to a staggering 100 inches, but the best part is that since it uses lasers, it’s always inherently in focus. This is an important feature, since the whole point of a micro projector is that you can whip it out and use it anywhere.

The PicoP uses an integrated battery that gives is approximately 2 hours per charge. There’s a proprietary input jack that will accept (through included adapters) composite video or VGA inputs. Look for it in Q2 of this year for about $500.

CES Day One

Dave and me

Hey all,

Well our first day at CES is in the books -- the booth crew was David Baty and myself, showing off the new SHOW WX projectors to many excited people. People really loved this thing and I think it's starting to get recognized that SHOW WX is the top product in this category in terms of image quality.

So, you have to give a lot of credit to our Engineering team up in Redmond who have really made it possible for us to stand up literally right next to a multi-billion dollar company showing their own small projector and have every single visitor tell us that our SHOW WX is much better.

That's due to many hours of hard work and dedication by a whole bunch of people who don't usually have the opportunity to come down for trade shows to see the customers respond first hand. So to our staff at HQ, big thanks for making us all look good and creating what I believe to be a sure-fire hit product.

We were positively slammed from the opening of the event and we met a whole lot of people eager to buy SHOWs as soon as they're available. So it's really nice to see customer demand voiced so strongly. Makes me think this could be a really terrific year for us. It was also great to meet more of our shareholders -- the excitement and passion for the company that our shareholders have is I think unlike just about any company out there. MVIS just captures people's imaginations in such a strong way and I want to thank everyone who flew out just to see our booth. I appreciate it a lot as do the rest of us.

Hope all's well out there and here's to a great next couple of days at the booth...!


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