The announcement came on February 2: Magic Leap added 793.5 million dollars in a third funding round lead by Alibaba Group which involved also Google and Qualcomm, already shareholders of the startup, as well as Warner Bros, Fidelity Management and Research, Jp Morgan Investment Management, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, T. Rowe Price Associates and Wellington Management Company. The total funding raised in the three rounds now stands at $ 1.385 billion.
The investor group is interesting since they are the parent company of one of the biggest marketplace in the world, of some high-tech companies, of a media group, of some merchant banks and investment funds. Everything suggests that each one wants to make a contribution to the success of startups (which among its partners already includes venture capitalists such as KKR, Vulcan Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Andreessen Horowitz, Obvious Ventures and more), and then launch an Ipo.
Setting aside the purely financial aspect of the news, it is evident that even Magic Leap contributes to split the rising virtual reality market along with companies like Oculus Rift, Sony or Valve, just to name a few. Specifically Magic Leap talking about “mixed reality lightfield”, because its viewer superimposes 3D computer generated images to reality. Watch this video to better understand what it is.
While other manufacturers of 3D viewers use stereoscopic images to create the illusion of depth, the Magic Leap device, which no one has yet seen, should project a light beam into the user’s eyes stimulating these in the same way that you would have if the superimposed images belonged to the real world. In order to achieve this Magic Leap is trying to create a chip able to create a light field using silicon photonics, something that has never been done.
Before to be able to announce a consumer version of its 3D viewer, still in the prototype stage, Magic Leap must therefore create the components and equipments necessary for its production. It will take a few more years, but at that point the virtual reality and augmented reality could merge into a single technological environment and Magic Leap could dominate the market that will be born. If you want to know how it will end, continue to follow Mondivirtuali.it, even through our account on Twitter and our fanpage on Facebook (but remember: Mondivirtuali is also on Flickr, on Pinterest, on Scoop.it e su Paper.li and also on Youtube).