LightSurf Technologies, Inc., the visual communications company founded by Philippe Kahn, today announced that it is developing a series of miniaturized, embeddable digital imaging solutions with wireless communications capabilities. The first of these embeddable products will be a miniature digital camera module smaller than a sugar cube.
The “digital eye” modules will be integrated into next generation cellular phones and clip-on accessory cameras, as well as PDAs and other wireless imaging devices. Leveraging LightSurf’s end-to-end visual communications infrastructure, this embedded technology enables mobile device users to capture, display and transmit high-quality digital photographs through wireless networks to other devices and platforms worldwide.
The “digital eye” modules will include a complete camera on a chip, CMOS imaging sensor, miniaturized lens and LightSurf’s embedded wireless acceleration and smart peer-to-peer imaging software. The technology supports peer-to-peer image sharing over today’s wireless networks as well as tomorrow’s 3G networks. The modules will be manufactured and distributed by component manufacturing and silicon companies.
“It’s time to cut the cords that have been holding back the convergence of the digital imaging and mobile communications industries,” said Philippe Kahn, chairman and CEO, LightSurf. “LightSurf’s high-quality ‘digital eye’ technology can easily be integrated into a range of devices, putting the power of visual communications into the hands of business and consumer users. Visual communications will drive the adoption of the next generation of wireless devices.”
LightSurf’s visual communications infrastructure includes digital imaging technology for consumer devices, intelligent wireless communications services and massively scalable back-end image sharing and storage systems.
The company’s technology and infrastructure now power both clip-on and embedded digital imaging solutions for wireless devices. The clip-on technology, announced late last year, is being integrated into stand-alone, miniature digital cameras that easily attach to cellular phones, making them instant wireless visual communicators.
LightSurf’s device technology fulfills demands from device manufacturers and wireless carriers for new revenue opportunities and product differentiators that can be customized for existing or next generation devices.
LightSurf is in discussions with a number of communication and imaging device manufacturers, wireless carriers and Internet Service Providers regarding integration and deployment strategies for its wireless visual communications infrastructure. In the first half of 2001, LightSurf expects to announce partnerships and enterprise-level pilot test programs involving the deployment of clip-on wireless digital imaging components as well as embedded wireless visual communications technology.
Target markets for LightSurf-powered devices include photojournalism, real estate, law enforcement, construction and the medical and legal professions, in addition to mass consumer categories. Initial applications will support still digital images, while the technology is scalable to enable capturing, sending and receiving digital video clips via video-chat devices.
“Wireless communications technology will make digital imaging the next must-have application in the mobile device market,” said Andrew Seybold, editor and publisher, Forbes/Andrew Seybold’s Wireless Outlook. “LightSurf’s visual communications technology is optimized to enable the peer-to-peer exchange of high quality digital images across multiple platforms, wireless network services and end user devices.”
LightSurf has already announced partnerships with Motorola (NYSE: MOT), Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE: EK), Agilent (NYSE: A) and SoundVision. LightSurf is collaborating with these companies on a number of business and consumer applications of its wireless visual communications technology and services.