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Change any surface into a touch screen – LBO’s laser projection

By Damir Beciri
21 July 2009

holographic-laser-projection-technologyIn our previous articles we already wrote about tangible interfaces that detect touch and we also wrote about pico projectors. This article is a combination of those two integrated into one. Light Blue Optics (LBO), developer and supplier of laser-based pico projection systems, announced closing of a US$15 million Series ‘A’ extension. The money will enable LBO to accelerate its product development and place it on multiple markets including automotive, industrial and consumer electronics. The Company’s first product – a projection engine suitable for integration into an accessory pico projectoris scheduled for release to OEM customers in Q4 09.

Light Blue Optics’ holographic laser projection technology delivers vibrant colors and focus-free operation, whilst maintaining the Class 1 laser safety classification essential to consumer electronics applications. Uniquely, the projection system can be touch-enabled, meaning any flat surface such as a table can be instantly transformed into a touch-sensitive display, eliminating the need for a touch screen and allowing users to interact with multi-media content in new and exciting ways.

LBO’s holographic laser projection technology creates bright, high-quality video and still images with applications in markets including automotive and consumer electronics. At CES, LBO will unveil miniature projection systems with real-time operation and optics half the volume and twice the brightness of those previously demonstrated by the Company. Additional features include a dynamic throw angle that enables the user to switch between conventional front projection and hands free table-down projection. The Company will also demonstrate a novel concept for table-down mode that allows the user to control the projector simply by touching the projected image.

Dr. Claus Schmidt, Managing Director of Robert Bosch Venture Capital (one of the investors) said; “RBVC has a remit to invest in technologies of ground-breaking strategic importance and LBO has all the characteristics of a great investment. The Company impressed us with their potential to create and capture a new product category of mobile, energy-efficient, interactive displays. Their proprietary technology will open up entirely new applications and revenue opportunities in markets such as consumer electronics and we are pleased to join the existing investors in supporting this exciting venture.”

Light Blue Optics’ CEO, Chris Harris added; “This $15 million financing round will enable LBO to accelerate its product development roadmap and address a wider range of applications. It’s a very exciting opportunity, not least in the consumer electronics space where the market for pico projectors has been forecast to exceed US$1 billion within 5 years. We now have the world-beating technology, experienced team and strong investor syndicate in place to realize that opportunity and become the world’s leading supplier of miniature projection systems.”

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