Pioneer's head-up display ambitions - which the company showed off at CEATEC 2010 earlier this year - look headed to a commercial release, with Microvision announcing that it will be providing its PicoP laser projection engine for the Pioneer Network Vision system. We shouldn't have too long to wait until the results start showing up in front of our eyes, either, as Pioneer is targeting commercial introduction of an in-vehicle HUD in 2012.
Video demo after the cut
However, automotive is just one angle the HUD system is being fettled for. Pioneer is apparently planning to use PicoP-based display engines in other consumer and after-market automotive products, though exact details of what we can expect - a Pioneer PMP, perhaps? - are unknown.
Rather than being a standalone system, Pioneer's Network Vision tech paired via Bluetooth or WiFi with a smartphone running your choice of PND app. The company suggests that by keeping notifications and GPS directions on the screen and at the regular eye-line level rather than on a dashboard display, driver safety will be improved.
MicroVision and Pioneer to Jointly Commercialize Innovative Laser Display Products
MicroVision, Inc. (NASDAQ: MVIS), a leader in innovative ultra-miniature laser display technology, announced today that it has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Pioneer Corporation, one of the top original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of high-performance audio, video and computer equipment for the home, car and business markets, to develop, manufacture and distribute display engines and display engine subsystems for consumer and in-vehicle head-up displays (HUDs) using the MicroVision PicoP(R) laser display technology.
Earlier this year, the two companies executed a joint development agreement to develop two critical components of the PicoP display engine: a laser light source module using direct red, blue, and green lasers and a separate display engine subsystem based on MicroVision's patented PicoP laser scanning technology. Both are key pieces of the next-generation PicoP display engine that will offer OEMs significant commercial advantages in price, size, power, and performance for embedded solutions ranging from cell phones and eyewear, to airplanes and automobiles.
The MOU establishes the framework of a future manufacturing and commercial distribution agreement for PicoP-based display engines to be used in consumer, after-market and embedded automotive products. Pioneer has announced it is targeting commercial introduction of an in-vehicle HUD using PicoP technology into the consumer market in 2012.
"Pioneer has a strong history of bringing cutting edge technologies to mass markets," stated Alexander Tokman, president and CEO of MicroVision. "We believe that by combining our respective market and product development capabilities, and leveraging best practices in manufacturing, MicroVision and Pioneer can accelerate introducing next-generation laser display products while reducing the total cost for both companies in getting there."
Both Pioneer and MicroVision were recently recognized as finalists for the CEATEC Innovation Awards for 2010. Pioneer was recognized in the Automotive category for its demonstration of a HUD using laser scanning technology provided by MicroVision, and MicroVision was recognized in the Components category for its SHOWWX(TM) laser pico projector, powered by the PicoP display engine.