Thursday, August 06, 2020

Himax Low Power Sensor + AI Processor Solution Attracts Interest from the Industry

GlobeNewswire: Himax updates on its imaging business in Q2 2020 earnings report:

"In order for Himax’s WiseEye technology to reach its maximum potential, the Company has adopted a flexible business model whereby, in addition to total solution where it provides processor, image sensor and AI algorithm, the Company also offers those individually as key parts in order to address the market’s different needs and widen its market coverage. For customers who own their own algorithm and wish to develop their own applications, Himax can provide its ultralow power AI processor and image sensor without algorithm. The customer can piggyback on Himax’s technology and focus their effort on bringing AI to edge devices by transforming a wide range of sensor data, including video, sound, movement, gesture, among others, into actionable information, all with extremely low power consumption. For those customers/partners whose main business is to provide AI processors, Himax can offer its ultralow power image sensors without its AI processor and algorithm.

For the total solution offering, Himax launched a computer vision human detection notebook solution which has been well recognized and is being incorporated into the next generation premium notebook models of key OEMs and ODMs. Himax’s total solutions are also being integrated into a wide range of other applications such as TV, doorbell, door lock, air conditioner, etc. by engaging leading players in those industries. For the other type of business model where Himax only offers key parts, the Company’s strategy is to actively participate in the ecosystems led by the world’s leading AI and cloud service providers. A recent illustration of this strategy is an announcement for the collaboration with Google whereby, running on Google’s TensorFlow Lite for Microcontrollers kernel, Himax provided its AI processor with CNN (convolutional neural network) based SDK (software development kit) for developers to generate deep learning inferences with video and voice commands data to boost overall system performance while consuming extremely low power.

Being an official partner of Google’s TensorFlow, Himax gets to enjoy the enormous network of its ecosystem participants. Just over a month after the announcement, Himax is already receiving inquiries from large corporations and individual AI developers alike with application ideas covering a broad range of industries. The Company is very encouraged by the enthusiastic discussions about possible WiseEye applications that are taking place in various user groups for emerging AI market ideas. Last but not least, Himax is working closely with other leading AI and cloud service providers worldwide to incorporate WiseEye edge AI solution into their ecosystems, in an attempt to reach the broadest market coverage possible. Himax is extremely excited about these developments.

Due to the accelerated adoption of work-from-home and online education, demand for Himax’s CMOS image sensor for notebook and IP camera will remain strong during the third quarter.

The Company’s industry-first 2-in-1 CMOS image sensor has penetrated into the laptop ecosystem for the most stylish super slim bezel design with 3 types of popular application features, namely RGB sensor for video conference, RGB/IR sensor for Windows Hello facial recognition, and/or ultralow power AI computer vision for human presence detection. Himax expects to see small volume in certain premium notebook models in late 2020 with more volume expected in the coming years.

For the traditional human vision segments, Himax also sees strong demand in multimedia applications such as car recorders, surveillance, drones, home appliances, and consumer electronics, among others.

Himax shows some use cases for its WiseEye solution:

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