Base calling has been a quagmire according to the cto in yesterday's presentation. They made some progress recently by changing the type of pore and base calling software. 1D sequencing has an accuracy of approximately 85%, 2D is approximately 95%. But 2D is technically unachievable in mass sequencing because of enormous computing requirement. So their product will be mostly using 1D sequencing in the future. To reduce systematic errors, they have to consider mixing different pores on the same chip, that will be technically very challenging. Systematic error alone will make their product useless in the diagnostic field. Again, these are their own words and we have yet to see actual data published by scientists who use their product. They do have a history of over promising in the past.
The prototype product of minion from oxford nanopore appeared in early 2012. The error rate from nanopore is higher than SMRT, some of them seems to be systemic, which can not be corrected by repeated sequencing. There are minimal number of publications associated with the use of minion so far. They also seem to have difficulty in fabricating the minion product with consistent quality. I don't think nanopore could become a serious competitor against pacb in the near future.
PACB partners with IMEC(Belgium) to develop their prototype ZMW, IMEC partners with MOSIS (Los Angeles) for prototype production. MOSIS partners with TSMC and Globalfoundries for large scale production.