VividQ announces £11m funding to bring holographic display to the world
Deep technology company VividQ, a software and IP developer for holography, has announced a seed extension round of £11m.
The Cambridge head-quartered business is powering the display revolution with Computer-Generated Holography. Its technology is used in the development of next-generation digital displays and devices, by manufacturers in the US, China and Japan.
To date, VividQ has secured over £17m in funding. The latest investment was led by UTokyo IPC, the venture investment arm for the University of Tokyo, who are joined by Foresight Williams Technology, a joint collaboration between Foresight Group and Williams Advanced Engineering, Japanese Miyako Capital, Austrian APEX Ventures, and Silicon Valley’s R42 Group. Previous investors University of Tokyo Edge Capital, Sure Valley Ventures, and Essex Innovation also participated.
The funding will be used to scale the team, expand in APAC and further product development, including HoloLCD, which turns consumer-grade screens into holographic displays.
Founded in 2017, VividQ has made cutting-edge developments that achieve real-time Computer-Generated Holography and address many failings of 3D displays and today’s AR devices. The company collaborates with key providers to bring this technology to everyday applications. VividQ has already worked with Arm, demonstrating mobile holographic display for the first time, and other partners include Compound Photonics, Himax Technologies, and iView Displays.
The funding round will further advance the adoption of VividQ’s solutions for Computer-Generated Holography, across three applications. The first is an Automotive HUD, developed in collaboration with partners, with the first target customers in the Chinese market. This holographic HUD powered by VividQ will be ready to go to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) early next year.
Secondly, VividQ is working to improve experiences offered by head-mounted displays (HMDs), and smart glasses. Acceptance of AR wearables has been limited by the bulkiness of devices and eyestrain. These issues are resolved by VividQ’s Computer-Generated Holography that projects actual 3D images with true depth of field, making displays more natural and immersive for users. This is a critical advance in the path to AR mass adoption. In 2020, the company was awarded a Smart Grant from Innovate UK for the development of the HMD system which showcases VividQ’s solutions in a holographic display, for an enhanced AR visual experience.
Finally, during 2020, the company discovered a way to turn LCD screens into holographic displays, meaning digital screens, from in-vehicle displays to gaming laptops and television, will provide interactive 3D holographic projections mid-air. This funding will be used to support the prototyping of HoloLCD systems.
Darran Milne, Co-Founder and CEO of VividQ, commented, “Scenes we know from films, from Iron Man to Star Trek, are becoming closer to reality than ever. At VividQ, we are on a mission to bring holographic displays to the world for the first time. Our solutions help bring innovative display products to the automotive industry, improve AR experiences, and soon will change how we interact with personal devices, such as laptops and mobiles.
“Our team has taken the technology that used to require immense amounts of computing power and found solutions to implement Computer-Generated Holography across consumer electronics. This new investment allows us to complete the next, critical phase of implementation projects and supports further innovation efforts to bring holography to new display applications. We’re incredibly excited to see what’s next with our customers.”