Himax Keeps Investing in 3D Sensing

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Himax announces its Q1 2017 results. The company updates on its image sensing business:

"With respect to the non-driver business, particularly in the WLO and CMOS Image Sensor products of 3D scanning solutions, we believe it is one of the most significant new applications for the next generation smartphone. Himax is well recognized to be the front runner and world leader in this important technology. Our SLiMTM product line is the state of the art total solutions for 3D sensing and scanning based on structured light technology, of which we can also provide individual technologies separately to selected customers to accommodate their specific needs. We are seeing strong demand for 3D scanning products from multiple top name customers who are either collaborating with us or engaging us for advanced stage discussions. In light of the promising new business opportunities around the corner, we will continue to invest heavily in R&D and customer engineering regardless of the prevailing unfavorable business conditions. We are aware that this will hit our short-term bottom line, but we believe such investment is extremely important and will bring in very handsome return in the next few years.

Sales of CMOS image sensors will deliver double-digit growth in the second quarter...

On the CMOS image sensor business update, the Company continues to make great progress with its two machine vision sensor product lines, namely near infrared (“NIR”) sensor and Always-on-Sensor (“AoS”). The Company’s NIR sensor is a critical part in the structured light 3D scanning total solution. Similar to WLO, the Company can supply NIR sensor as an individual component for both mobile and non-mobile applications. The Company’s NIR sensors’ overall performance is far ahead of those of its peers. Himax currently can offer low noise HD and 5.5 megapixel NIR sensors with superior quantum efficiency in NIR band while operating at excellent power consumption.

Himax’s AoS solutions provide super low power computer vision to enable new applications across a very wide variety of industries. The ultra-low power, always-on vision sensor is a powerful solution capable of detecting, tracking and recognizing its environment in an extremely efficient manner using just a few milliwatts of power. In April, Himax announced a strategic investment in Emza, an Israeli software company dedicated to developing extremely efficient machine vision algorithms. The investment enables the Company to provide turn-key solutions to meet customers’ increasing appetite for ultra-low power. With Emza’s machine-vision algorithms, the Company can transform AoS sensor from a pure image capturing component to an information analytics device that can be easily integrated into smart home and security applications as well as smartphone, AR/VR, AI and IoT devices.

For the traditional human vision segments, the Company expects mass production of several earlier design wins for notebooks and increased shipments for multimedia applications such as car recorder, surveillance, drone, home appliances, and consumer electronics, among others, during the second quarter.
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