From Wednesday's press release:
Tokyo, March 4, 2015 – Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE) today announced that the PlayStation®4 (PS4™) computer entertainment system has cumulatively sold through more than 20.2 million units*1 worldwide as of March 1. PS4 continues to demonstrate the fastest and strongest growth in PlayStation® hardware history.
"...they don't have anything over 50mW either, do they?"
Seems enough power for a near-eye display?
QDLaser claims their 532nm GLs are superior to GaN-based direct green lasers.
"QD Laser and NanoQuine unveil prototype of retina imaging laser eyewear for low-vision care
QD Laser Inc of Kanagawa Japan and the Institute for Nano Quantum Information Electronics (NanoQuine) at the University of Tokyo have unveiled the prototype of their retina imaging laser eyewear for low-vision care. The plan is to commercialize the low-vision oriented retina imaging laser eyewear by March 2016.
The prototype is to be exhibited in the 30th Annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference in San Diego, CA, USA (4-6 March 2015)."
Some possible reasons:
In the case of products containing PicoP, starting small may be a way to negotiate a limited supply of components or avoiding the risk of tooling up to the scale required to serve a global consumer mass market--especially for an uncertain new technology.
It may also have to do with public perception. It was recently revealed that Sony was behind a Kickstarter campaign for a new smartwatch. This may be Sony's strategy to avoid the stigma of product failure--should that be the outcome.
A startup with fresh ideas may receive broader media attention than a name associated with struggling products or financial problems. This is also an affordable way to seed the market.
On rebranding (from wiki):
"Rebranding is a marketing strategy in which a new name, term, symbol, design, or combination thereof is created for an established brand with the intention of developing a new, differentiated identity in the minds of consumers, investors, and competitors."
Projection mapping. More specifically, *dynamic* projection mapping, is the key to pico projection--going viral, imo. Small steps to get there?
Lenovo is said to announce a pico projector at MWC. Will it have dynamic keystone correction and image stabilization? Is pico projection about to get serious?
Patent depicts smartphone attached to bendable lightweight stand. Projecting large-size computer display with keyboard--on a tabletop. Gesture-interactive.
I sense here a growing connection between Intel and Apple..
United States Patent Application
Kutliroff; Gershom ; et al.
February 26, 2015
SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR CREATING AND INTERACTING WITH A SURFACE DISPLAY
Systems and methods for projecting graphics onto an available surface, tracking a user's interactions with the projected graphics, and providing feedback to the user regarding the tracked interactions are described. In some embodiments, the feedback is provided via updated projected graphics onto the surface. In some embodiments, the feedback is provided via an electronic screen.
Kutliroff; Gershom; (Alon Shvut, IL) ; Madmoni; Maoz; (Kibutz Bet Kamah, IL)
The two patents listed below pertain to the alternative piezo fiber scanning method described in Magic Leap IP. The other scanning method described in their IP is PicoP (LBS)
An inventor listed on both patents, Brian Schowengerdt, works for HITlab. He appears to have worked under contract for both Intel and MicroVision--and recently, Magic Leap
United States Patent
Melville , et al.
June 24, 2014
University of Washington UW TechTransfer--Invention Licensing (Seattle, WA)
Scanning laser projection display devices and methods for projecting one or more images onto a surface with a light-scanning optical fiber
United States Patent Application
Abovitz; Rony ; et al.
January 15, 2015
MAGIC LEAP, INC.
PLANAR WAVEGUIDE APPARATUS WITH DIFFRACTION ELEMENT(S) AND SYSTEM EMPLOYING SAME
Another inventor on the earlier UW patent, Eric Seibel, demonstrates how the piezo tube scanner works.
I see limitations to this being applied to AR/VR. That it is compact (narrow) is a possible advantage.
Compelling use case:
"Further, the user does not have to take out the smartphone 2 and can leave the smartphone 2 in the pocket or a bag to view the image such as the map. Thus, the wristband type terminal 1 can spare the user the trouble of taking out the smartphone 2 of the pocket or the bag."
Projects in two directions. Laser-based (of course). Plenty of applications.
United States Patent Application 20150054730
Kind Code A1
KODAMA; Kenichiro February 26, 2015
WRISTBAND TYPE INFORMATION PROCESSING APPARATUS AND STORAGE MEDIUM
A waveguide is not a projection method. It is the viewing lens. The transparent part you look through--and also a substrate that reflects LBS (or other) content onto the wearer's retina. MicroVision has patents covering various waveguide designs. The newer waveguides incorporate microlens structures that enable holographic viewing.
Engadget story--just posted. They are still clueless.
Few are aware ML are employing PicoP and also another LBS method developed at UW: piezoelectric oscillating tube. The "smaller than a grain of rice built into a black wire" piece was originally designed for improved endoscopy.
The IP is available at USPTO for all to see.
I notice those tech blog smarty pants have yet to drill down to such details.
FYI, the monocle is not new. I saw it on the site at least a couple years ago. If it directly pertains to MVIS we would have heard about it by now? If it is someone elses MEMS then there may not be a licensing agreement in place--yet--hopefully.
The deceptively simple thing about phosphor coatings as projection display elements is there is little limit to pixel size--down to a molecular level of chemical composition.
That's a small "pixel".
Applying higher resolution (greater scan line density) at even lower power may produce an effect of increased visibility--on top of the efficiencies phosphorescence already lends.
The possible bonus for a tech like this is outstanding high brightness--even #1 in it's category.
"I don't know the detailed SEC rules. Aren't they obligated to announce the contract if it is in place?"
Sony does not announce final contracts. Go to Sony Global and check the archives. If at all, they announce original intent "agreements". Similarly, Sony customers don’t make contract-related public announcements. For example, Apple’s purchase of Sony cameras for their devices is reported through third parties--and most often after the fact. Think about it. If MicroVision announced that Sony was licensing PicoP during Q1 2015, and Sony (and/or customers) had forthcoming products in the pipeline--that would be considered a premature announcement carrying all sorts of liabilities.
Efficient white LEDs are blue diodes wrapped in phosphors that flouresce in a range of wavelengths to produce bright white light. Their energy efficiency is noted.