Recent Investments: eyeSight Raises $4.2 Million From CEVA, Mitsui
Speaking of financial transactions involving recently discussed companies staffed by Israeli founders, eyeSight Mobile Technologies (who I mentioned earlier this month as being the technology basis for Pantech's latest gesture interface-capable camera phones) just a few days ago received a notable Series B incremental investment from a fellow Israeli firm, CEVA, as well as from Japan-based Mitsui & Co. Global Investment. Unlike the previously mentioned (and still not officially confirmed) acquisition of VideoSurf by Microsoft, this particular news was publicly announced. From the CEVA press release:
Under the equity investment agreement, eyeSight will offer its advanced portfolio of touch-free interface technologies, including gesture recognition and finger tracking software, to users of the CEVA-MM3000 image signal processing (ISP) and video platform. The combined offering will deliver an ultra-low power, software-based solution, enabling the cost-efficient deployment of gesture recognition technologies in mass market devices...The complexity of gesture recognition applications continues to rapidly evolve and poses a significant burden on CPU performance and power consumption.
By offloading the main CPU from performing advanced gesture technologies to the CEVA-MM3000, it is estimated that the system power efficiency can be improved by a factor of 20X, crucial for any battery powered device. Enabling low cost deployment for gesture applications, eyeSight leverages the existing camera in any device to enable the gesture functionality without any increase in bill-of-materials. In addition, the fully programmable nature of the CEVA-MM3000 platform facilitates future upgrades of eyeSight’s technologies through software updates, and allows customers to add their own proprietary features and algorithms to the platform.
For more coverage, see the Wall Street Journal's writeup.