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Google invests in Glass display chip maker Himax

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Google has invested in Taiwanese chipmaker Himax, which is responsive for developing the display chips used in Google Glass.

The search engine giant now has a 6.3 per cent stake in Himax after its investment, but has the option to purchase a further 8.5 per cent of the company within the next calendar year.

Himax creates the liquid-crystal on silicon chips used in the Google Glass display, as well as other HUD and pico-projectors.

Google’s investment in Himax will allow the Taiwanese chipmaker to expand capacity, which could potentially lower the price of Google Glass when it launches.

“Google is a pre-eminent global technology leader. We are delighted to receive this investment and to form a strategic partnership with Google”, said Jordan Wu, Himax President and CEO. “Beginning the second quarter of this year, we had already begun expanding capacity to meet demand for our LCOS product line.”

The Taiwanese chipmaker already as Intel as one of its key investors, and has been in operation since 2004.

“This investment from Google further validates our commitment to developing breakthrough technologies and state-of-the-art production facilities. We look forward to leveraging this investment and our collective expertise with Google to create unique and transformational LCOS technologies for many years ahead.”

Unveiled in June 2012, Google Glass is a product which CEO Larry Page has described as vital to the future of Google.

“We’re obviously excited about Google Glass. And any new ways of interacting with hardware and new types of hardware,” said Page during the Google earnings call for Q2 2013. “With any technological change you probably overestimate the short-term and underestimate the long-term. We’re really excited about making those investments and making sure we’re positioned to the future.”

Expected to launch for the general public early 2014, Google Glass devices are currently being tested by developers and those who are part of the Glass Explorer project.

“That’s why I love using Glass because I feel like every time I’m using Glass I’m living that future, that’s really, really exciting to me.”

Next, read the Google Glass privacy problem and how to solve it.

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