Thursday, February 13, 2020

Himax Reports Q4 Earnings

GlobeNewswire: Himax Q4 2019 earnings report updates on the company's imaging business:

"Ultra-low power smart sensing

WiseEye is the Company’s AI-based ultra-low power smart sensing solution. The demand for battery-powered smart device with AI intelligent sensing is rapidly growing. The Company’s total solution is built on Emza’s unique AI-based algorithm, on top of Himax’s proprietary computer vision processor and CMOS image sensor, all equipped with ultra-low power design. Currently laptop is the market of focus. Himax WiseEye 2.0 NB solution provides a ‘laptop-ready’ 3-in-1 RGB/IR/AI solution, respecting privacy while enhancing security for notebook users. At the CES 2020, a number of notebook OEMs and ODMs demonstrated Himax’s WiseEye NB solution in their next generation premium notebooks with positive feedback. In addition to notebook, the Company has also made progress in the displays and IoT markets. Innolux, one of the world's leading manufacturers of TFT-LCD displays, has integrated the Himax-Emza WiseEye solution into displays to enable consumer privacy protection in real time. Also, Chicony, one of the largest ODMs in the world, and Emza jointly announced a reference design of the world’s first battery-powered human sensing solution for IoT in December 2019. Both Innolux and Chicony showcased their products at CES.

Previously the Company has mentioned that, in addition to total solution, Himax is also able to offer ultra-low power smart sensing on the basis of individual parts so as to address the market’s different needs and maximize the potential opportunities for Himax. It will elaborate on this in the CMOS image sensor discussion below.

CMOS Image Sensor

CMOS image sensor is another critical part of the WiseEye 2.0 NB solution. To support the lean camera design and high-quality image needed for thin bezel laptops, Himax has made a 2-in-1 sensor that offers the duo capabilities of high quality HD image capturing and ultra-low-power, low resolution visual sensing in one single sensor, the industry’s first with the innovative design. With this sensor, laptop makers can simplify their next generation product design and save costs by eliminating the need for an additional camera to provide context awareness for a better user experience. Himax’s sensor has also incorporated an RGB-IR design to enable Windows Hello facial recognition. This new 2-in-1 CMOS sensor is currently available for its partners/customers.

In addition, Himax recently announced the commercial availability of an industry-first ultra-low power and low latency, backside-illuminated CMOS image sensor solution with autonomous modes of operations for always-on, intelligent visual sensing applications such as human presence detection and tracking, gaze detection, behavioral analysis, and pose estimation for growing markets such as smart home, smart building, healthcare, smartphone
and AR/VR devices.

Himax is collaborating with leading partners within the ecosystem to reduce time to market for intelligent edge vision solutions. Notably, the Company is working closely with Google and has become the reference design for its
world-leading TensorFlow Lite AI framework targeting low power edge devices.

For the traditional human vision segments, Himax sees strong demand in notebooks, where the Company is one of the market leaders, and has experienced increased shipments for multimedia applications such as car recorders, surveillance, drones, home appliances, and consumer electronics, among others. Additionally, Himax has seen increased shipments and new design-wins in the automotive segment covering before-market solutions such as surround view and rear-view camera.

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