Skip to main content

Why STMicroelectronics bought projector start-up BTendo

We've written a number of times about an R&D collaboration between STMicroelectronics and an Israeli company called BTendo that's developed leading technology for scanning laser projection.  Their collaboration, combining BTendo's projection technology with STMicroelectronics MEMS expertise, has developed a pico-projector component designed for phones and other electronic devices.

Earlier this month the news broke that STMicroelectronics has acquired BTendo.

We wrote about their projection component back in March, reporting on the new trend in cellphone projectors at MWC.  Their prototype showed the projector in action as a distinct device, but their target is to have the component embedded into cellphones and other devices.

Their specs are similar to those of the Samsung's Galaxy Beam.  They're targeting 12-15 Lumens, and resolution anywhere from SVGA up to WXG.  This component could be the way that other cellphone makers will catch up to Samsung in equipping phones with projectors.

Grizzly Analytics has long felt that cellphones with embedded projectors would have a huge potential in the consumer content-consumption area.  Projectors have usually been discussed for business users, but I think that the new generation of mobile movie-watchers and movie-sharers will enjoying having a projector in their pockets.

The biggest question is why ST chose to acquire BTendo now.  Is the tipping point coming for cellphone projectors? Does ST have deals in the works for embedding their projector technology into new cellphones?

As even more far-out speculation, we've long suspected that the upcoming iPhone 5 will have something really new.  Apple has a way of getting analysts and pundits to think about the incremental improvements, and then throw out a radically new thing.  Will September's news about the iPhone 5 include a projector?  Will it be based on technology from ST?  Only time will tell.....  But if it's not Apple, it going to be someone else who brings this great new pico-projector component to market.

Comments

  1. My best guess is that the component to project mini-video is still:
    1) Too expensive,
    2) Too large, and
    3) Too power hungry
    for inclusion in the upcoming iPhone-5.

    ReplyDelete
  2. It's simple... bTendo ran out of money and the price was bargain

    ReplyDelete
  3. Projectors are still too expensive for common use such as in presentation and education.

    ReplyDelete
  4. projector is a machine that shines a reflection of an image or text onto the surface in front of it. I have a projector that shines good quality video projector for displaying video, images or computer data on a screen or other flat surface. Thanks for the information you have post.
    Projection Screens

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Intel demos indoor location technology in new Wi-Fi chips at MWC 2015

Intel made several announcements at MWC 2015, including a new chipset for wireless connectivity (Wi-Fi) in mobile devices. This new chipset, the 8270, include in-chip support for indoor location positioning. Below we explain their technology and show a video of it in action. With this announcement, Intel joins Broadcom, Qualcomm and other chip makers in moving broad indoor location positioning into mobile device hardware.

The transition of indoor location positioning into chips is a trend identified in the newest Grizzly Analytics report on Indoor Location Positioning Technologies, released the week before MWC 2015. By moving indoor location positioning from software into hardware, chips such as Intel's enable location positioning to run continuously and universally, without using device CPU, and with less power consumption.

Intel's technology delivers 1-3 meter accuracy, using a technique called multilateration, generating a new location estimate every second. While 1-3 meter …

Seeing Quuppa's indoor location technology at MWC 2015

I first met Fabio and Kimmo from Quuppa in 2012, before Quuppa existed, when they had spent years researching indoor location positioning technologies at Nokia Research Center. Less than a year after that they formed Quuppa, independent of Nokia, to bring their technology to market. At the time I called Quuppa "the newest and oldest in indoor location positioning."

Fast forward two and a half years. Their technology has reached market, it can now track both smartphones and BLE devices, and it's accurate to within 20-50cm. Before reading more about their technology, take a look at a video of their demo in action:



Grizzly Analytics has analyzed indoor location technologies by over 150 companies, and virtually all of the radio-based technologies operate by measuring the distance between the device being tracked and other radio devices, and using these distance measurements for either multilateration or fingerprinting. For example, the well known BLE beacons measure a device…

Robot Camera Foreshadows an Era of Location-Aware Electronics

A French company called Move 'N See produces a line of camera robots. Their devices act as a smart tripod, holding a video camera and automatically moving and zooming the camera as people of interest move around a site.

The idea is simple but amazingly innovative. Photo selfies are easy to take, but video selfies are next to impossible. How can I video myself playing football or doing gymnastics, without setting the camera so far back as to be useless? Do spectators want to spend an entire sporting event carefully videoing their friend or relative moving around the field?
Enter Move 'N See's "personal robot cameramen." Their devices aim, pan and zoom a video camera as one or more people move around an area. The people of interest wear armbands whose locations are tracked, enabling the camera controller to know where to aim the camera. The camera controller also includes enough smarts to adjust the camera smoothly and to capture multiple people evenly. The armband…