By Dr. Phil Garrou, Contributing Editor
Omnivision sold to Chinese Consortium
OmniVision, a supplier of CMOS imaging chips has entered into an agreement to be acquired by a Chinese consortium, which includes Hua Capital Management Co. for ca. $1.9 billion. The transaction is expected to close in the 3Q or 4Q 2016, if it receives necessary regulatory approvals including antitrust review in the U.S. and review and clearance by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. In order to obtain clearance or approval in Taiwan, OmniVision will divest certain of its investments, including certain of its interests in a Taiwan joint venture.
Speaking of players in the CMOS imaging sensor market, Yole recently updated their market look at these devices as shown below. While smartphones are still the main driver, there are a lot of other applications for these devices.
Giving your smartphone “the eye”
If you’re getting tired of using the fingerprint sensor or typing in a password to access your smartphone like I am, it looks like a selfie will soon become the access method of choice.
EyeVerify has developed Eyeprint ID - a highly accurate biometric technology for smart devices that delivers the ultimate in secure, private authentication. This patented solution uses existing cameras on mobile devices to image and pattern-match the blood vessels in the whites of the eye. Check it out at www.eyeverify.com.
Currently, a Fujitsu smartphone is using iris-recognition technology. The phone recognizes the unique pattern of the iris, which remains constant after the age of two and is difficult to forge [link]. That pattern is read by shining an infrared LED light on the eyes and taking an image of them with an infrared camera to acquire the iris pattern, which is registered and used to verify matches.
Fujitsu claims the technology will be faster and more accurate than face recognition. Because this uses ActiveIRIS from Delta ID, this system can be used at a normal smartphone viewing distance, rather than within the 10cm range that most existing iris recognition systems require. In standard photobiological safety testing, the infrared LED light was verified to be safe for the eyes.
Fujitsu is not the only company working on iris-recognition technology. Chinese smartphone manufacturer ZTE included the iris recognition software in a new smartphone earlier this year. Samsung has also recently filed patents for iris recognition.
RTI 3D ASIP scheduled for December 2015
The RTI (Research Triangle Institute) 3D ASIP (Architectures for Semiconductor Integration & Packaging) Conference is the longest running 3D conference in the world. The 2015 conference will be the 13th in succession. There will be some important changes that I want to bring you all up to date on.
The General Chair for the last 12 meetings has been RTI employee Matt Mecray (see 2012 photo of Bob Patti, Matt and Arif Rahman) who a lot of you have gotten to know through the years. Many thanks to Matt for his efforts. Unknown to many of you is that Matt does not live at the RTI headquarters site in Research Triangle Park NC, but rather in Portland Maine. Yes that is the East coast town that received over 100 inches of snow this past winter. (talk to me about global warming sometime). Anyway, after leading us for 12+ years Matt is moving on to other activities at RTI and they have asked me to take over his general chair duties for this years conference which will be held Dec 15-17th. The conference will once again be held near the SF airport (site to be chosen soon).
What in the past has been called “the preconference symposium” will now be known reserved for special topic tutorials, one AM and one PM which will cover two 3D related topics that I hope will be of interest to our attendees. The conference will be on the 16th & 17th of December. We are in the process of developing the program so if you have any thoughts on what you’d like to see included send them to me ASAP.
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