2/19/2003 6:35:00 AM
BOTHELL, Wash., Feb 19, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Microvision, Inc.
(Nasdaq:MVIS), a leader in light scanning technologies, announced today that it
has entered into a new agreement with Canon, Inc. that builds on work conducted
during the last year to develop miniature electronic displays that can be used
in consumer products including digital cameras and digital video cameras.
“With revenue in excess of $24 billion US, Canon is known throughout the world
for innovation and quality in products ranging from medical and industrial
imaging tools to very high volume consumer products, and they occupy a dominant
position in many of the markets that they serve,” said Microvision CEO Rick
Rutkowski. “Canon’s consummate skills in the design, packaging and high-volume
manufacture of optical components and systems can be a great asset as we pursue
our goal of delivering low-cost, high performance, microdisplay products to
address a variety of high volume market opportunities. We are gratified to work
with such a discerning and capable company.”
A Canon senior executive said: “Through this agreement, Canon looks forward to
further exploring Microvision’s miniature display technology, which offers a
range of possibilities that could contribute to the development of a new
generation of innovative imaging products.”
Microvision’s proprietary miniature display technology projects full-motion,
high-resolution images using just three Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) to create a
spot of light that is reflected off of a vibrating mirror on a micromechanical
silicon chip. The tiny mirror rapidly scans a single beam of multi-colored light
through a small lens to project, into the viewer’s eye, a full-color video image
of the apparent size and resolution of a notebook or laptop display screen.
Because of the relative simplicity of the tiny silicon chip that is at the heart
of Microvision’s display, the company believes that its retinal scanning display
technology can produce very high quality images at much lower costs than
competing miniature flat panel display technologies.
According to Microvision, current prototypes of the technology produce
high-resolution Super VGA (800 X 600) images with extraordinary dynamic range
and unmatched color reproduction.
“We are extremely happy with the display’s performance. It produces stunning
images that are as good as, if not better than, a very high quality desktop
monitor,” offered Steve Willey, President of Microvision. “We’ve also made
tremendous strides in miniaturization during the last year and expect in the
next 6 months to meet our goal of minimum display volume consistent with
requirements for commercial products. We are now focusing our efforts on
developing strategies to scale to high volume production and on achieving very
aggressive cost targets. We aren’t ready to provide details about any product
launch yet, but we have completed important feasibility and prototyping work.
There are a variety of display and imaging product opportunities that Canon and
Microvision could explore together.”
According to respected industry observers such as IDC, Infotrends Research
Group, Inc. and Cahners In-Stat Group, digital camera makers are expected to
sell more than 40 million cameras annually by the year 2005.
“Annual production volumes for consumer products such as digital cameras,
digital video cameras and mobile internet devices are projected to reach
hundreds of millions of units annually in the next several years,” added Willey.
“On that basis, we believe the market for our miniature displays can reach tens
of millions of units annually in that same time frame. The key challenge for
this next generation of devices is that consumers are going to need small,
inexpensive products, like digital cameras and mobile handsets to produce the
same high quality images that we see on desktop and laptop computers today. The
greatest advantage of Microvision’s technology is that we believe that we can
deliver superior resolution and image quality at much lower prices than
competing miniature flat panel displays.”
About Microvision: www.microvision.com
Headquartered in Bothell, Wash., Microvision Inc. is the developer of the
patented retinal scanning display technology and a world leader in micro
miniature optical scanning technology for display and imaging applications. The
company’s technology has applications in a broad range of military, medical,
industrial, professional and consumer information products.
Forward Looking Statement
Certain statements contained in this release, including plans to develop
products, meet development timetables, future arrangements with Canon,
opportunities for product sales, and product applications, as well as statements
containing words like “believe,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “intend,” “expect,”
and other similar expressions, are forward-looking statements that involve a
number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to
differ materially from those projected in our forward-looking statements include
the following: market acceptance of our technologies and products; our financial
and technical resources relative to those of our competitors; our ability to
obtain financing; our ability to keep up with rapid technological change;
government regulation of our technologies; our ability to enforce our
intellectual property rights and protect our proprietary technologies; the
ability to obtain additional contract awards and to develop partnership
opportunities; the timing of commercial product launches and ability to supply
products in commercial quantities; the ability to achieve key technical
milestones in key products; and other risk factors identified from time to time
in our SEC reports and filings, including in our most recently filed
Registration Statement on Form S-3.
Matt Nichols (media), 425/415-6657
Brian Heagler (investors), 425/415-6794
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