Apple invests $390M in Finisar laser chip tech that powers the iPhone X

Since Apple’s entry in the Augmented Reality (AR) space, it has invested heavily in technology to bring the best experience to its customers.

In May, Apple awarded Coring, a glass supplier, with $200 million to support its development. Most recently, the company acquired Shazam ( that Zappar, an AR content creation platform, merged with to scan AR codes in the preloaded app) to get ahead in the AR game.

Apple has awarded $390M from its $1 billion Advanced Manufacturing Fund to Finisar, an optical communication components supplier based in the US.

This investment will set-up a unit of Finisar in Sherman, Texas to manufacture Vertical-Cavity Surface-Emitting Laser (VCSEL), a semiconductor-based laser diode that emits a highly efficient optical beam vertically from its top surface. This technology has been used in the iPhone X to power features like Face ID, Portrait mode selfies and Animoji.

 

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Image source: Appleinsider

 

Apple aims to support innovation and employment in the US by making Sherman the VCSEL-capital (starting with the purchase of VCSEL 10 times more than ever in the 4th quarter of 2017 alone) and looks forward to benefiting from an in-depth R&D that improves laser scanning in the iPhone.

With every move towards a seamless AR experience, Apple is leaving no space for competition to fill-in and is growing at a speed that is hard to catch up with.

So, what can we expect in the future from Apple-Finisar deal?

Well, with such huge investments the next iPhone is definitely going to come out with a better laser scanning that comprehends the environment’s depth and curves in a deeper detail.

This could also possibly be powered by a rear-facing 3D Sensor but this feature is rumoured to be a release of 2019.

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