Thursday, June 21, 2012

MicroVision | End of the Road or End of the Tunnel

The last post I wrote about MicroVision was over a year ago; and the title was the most revealing and depressing…

MicroVision: Major Cost Cutting Measures or Death Spiral?  

A year later─ after blowing another $40 million or so down the hole, and 1 for 8 reverse split─ we seem to be at another juncture in the MicroVision saga.  This time; it’s either the end of the road or end of the tunnel for MicroVision.

Over the last year, we have seen some major cost cutting measures… but still burning $20 million dollars or so per year.  On surface it seems like a good effort… but not good enough to save the company while still waiting for Diode Green Lasers.

At the rate MVIS stock prices is going [down]; it looks like the end of the road… but there is, at the same time, hope that it could be the end of the tunnel and some green light of hope setting into the picture.

There we go again, the good old pesky Diode Green Lasers─ the Holy Grail to the MicroVision salvation.

Before we get into details and start talking about pesky Diode Green Lasers and Holy Grail and such… lets re-visit the issues once more…

Lately, there has been very little visible activity or news at MicroVision─ other than more stock issues and dilution.  And that makes me wonder: “What's up with no SHOW at the Displayland of laser based Pico Projectors?”

Here's the latest scoop and thinking based on some consumer feedback...
  1. Fifteen lumen bright Pico projectors, regardless of the brand name or the underlying technology, are a toy as a standalone device... but the market is quite receptive to such devices in the $99 to $149 range. However, anything better than 15 lumen is definitely a differentiating improvement and worthy of $149 to $199 price tag.
  2. Fifteen lumen bright Pico projectors, using panel or DLP/LED technology, use too much battery power and need constant focusing... and they will also have other gating [like size and heat] issues making into the mobile devices. If panel/DLP/LED technology gets past the mobile platform gating issues; but at fifteen lumens they will still be considered a toy.  However, the market is quite receptive to such devices in the $99 to $149 range... especially when someone else [like AT&T or Verizon] is paying for it. 
  3. Fifteen lumen bright Pico projectors, using MEMS/DGL technology, present a more favorable solution to the battery power issues and do not need constant focusing... and they will have far fewer mobile platform gating issues.  However, at fifteen lumen such laser based devices will still be considered toy... but market is quite receptive to such devices in the $99 to $149 range... especially when someone else is paying for it.
Bottom line is...

“... Can MicroVision make 25 or 30 lumen bright DGL based HD IPMs [High Definition Integrated Photonic Modules] for embedded Pico projectors in millions; and make them cheap enough to be able to sell them in the $149 to $199 range; and manage to stave-off the financial death spiral by showing some net profit on each sale?”

A few dollars profit on each unit sold could easily translate into millions of dollars in profit when adoption rates in handheld devices accelerate into hundreds of million units in the next 3-5 years.

In my opinion, the answer, with some qualifications, is an astounding yes.

Here’s why…

Sony, Sumitomo push laser projectors forward with a new, more powerful green laser diode

By Richard Lawler
Posted June 21st, 2012 7:47AM

Sumitomo Electric and Sony Announce the Joint-Development of the World's First True Green Semiconductor Laser Diode with over 100 mW Output Power at 530nm

Achieves Twice the Luminosity of Conventional Gallium Nitride Green Laser Diodes

Here’s the link to the Press Release from Sony…

This is the best news in the history of MicroVision. Because Diode Green Laser at over 100 mW in the true green region wavelength of 530 nm and at 8% wall efficiency…

“… Will allow MicroVision to produce 25 to 30 lumen bright HD IPMs that will take less energy and can be scaled to millions at much reduced cost.”

Now here’s the question for the CEO and BODs of MicroVision...

“After five years of financial orgy─ that produced insignificant amount of sales [of anything] but involved dozens of highly paid managers [and support staff] in the PR, IR, Sales, Marketing, Business Development, Administration, Global Product Management, etc─ can you deliver, now that you have efficient DGLs that you always wanted?”

Or you have another excuse, like…

“… We have cut the fat so deep; it may be “slicing the bone” and caused structural damage to the integrity of the company.”

Investors of MicroVision want to know?

Better still…

“Why not all of you re-sign with some dignity and let competent management team takeover from here?

The last hand is in play... and over the next 6 months it’s the do or quit time for MicroVision brass.

Producer CEO - RKNet Studios

Producer - Movie 'Pyar Mein Kyun'