Himax to acquire Emza Visual Sense

23 April, 2017

Himax Technologies bought 45.1% equity ownership in Emza Visual Sense, the developer of ultra-low power image sensor for Home, Security and IoT applications

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The semiconductor fabless manufacturer from Taiwan, Himax Technologies (Nasdaq: HIMX), plans to complete the acquisition of Emza Visual Sense within a year. Last week Himax has made a strategic investment in Israel, and bought in cash 45.1% equity ownership in Emza, with a one year option to acquire the remaining 54.9% of the company. The terms of the investment were not disclosed.

Emza Visual Sense develops extremely efficient visual sensors that include proprietary machine-vision algorithms and special architecture to deliver always-on visual sensing capabilities. “The strategic investment in Emza compliments our previously announced ultra low power CMOS image sensor product and solutions for ‘always-on’ smart camera,” said Jordan Wu, CEO of Himax.

Ultra-low power sensors

“The computer vision market demands highly efficient sensors, algorithms, camera and processor architectures capable of delivering extremely low power consumption, needed for TVs and smartphones, as well as AR/VR, IoT, and AI devices. Together with Emza, we can transform our AoS sensor from a simple ‘image capturing device’ to an ‘information analytics device’.”

Yoram Zylberberg, CEO of Emza, said that the partnership with Himax, provides Emza access to a unique technology of ultra low-power CMOS devices. “Achieving advanced computer vision at ultra low-power consumption requires tight integration between the silicon and algorithms.”

Emza from Kfar-saba, Israel, has developed a unique, patented ultra-lean architecture and algorithms for computer vision solutions run on extremely thin microprocessors such as ARM Cortex M4, ARM11, DSPs or embedded, inside the pixels of CMOS sensors. This technology power the WiseEye always-on visual IoT  sensor, co-developed with CEVA (NASDAQ: CEVA), together with Himax Imaging, a subsidiary of Himax Technologies.

The era of wise sensors

The WiseEye IoT sensor consists of Himax low power CMOS Imager Sensor, CEVA’s low power vision DSP technology and emza’s machine vision algorithms. The result is a powerful solution capable of detecting, tracking and recognizing its environment in an extremely efficient manner using a few milliwatts of power.

The sensor allows low-cost IoT systems to employ advanced always-on intelligence for applications such as virtual assistants, wearable devices, connected home sensors, residential security, protection of elderly, automotive, smart buildings systems and smart city infrastructure.

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