Driven by gesture recognition, augmented and virtual reality, as well as 3D mapping applications, the market for 3D sensing is expanding rapidly.
Mobile Devices and Wearables
Consumer mobile devices are equipped with an increasing number of smart sensors. Biometric authentication through facial recognition allows secure access to data on tablets and smartphones. LIDAR range sensors integrated into the main camera module enable faster and advanced autofocus features, and are used to scan the environment for augmented and mixed reality apps. II-VI makes light sources (VCSELs and VCSEL arrays) and wafer-level optics as well as complete illumination modules that are used for the most advanced 3D sensors in smartphones.
Augmented and Virtual Reality Headsets
Virtual and augmented reality will bring 3D content into our daily experiences, such as when shopping, gaming, or reading an assembly manual. VR/AR headsets are enabled by 3D depth sensors that can scan the user’s environment and create three-dimensional digital representations in real time. Wearable displays can be miniaturized to fit into a pair of eyeglasses and overlay digital content onto the world we see. II-VI offers light sources (VCSELs and edge-emitting lasers) as well as diffractive optics and optical materials, such as SiC and CVD Diamond, for microdisplays and 3D cameras.
The digital revolution has rapidly increased the need for computing power and data storage. This demand ranges from personal computing with PCs and notebooks all the way to cloud computing with high-end servers and storage systems in data centers. Smart sensors enable advanced features such as user authentication or advanced user interfaces. Next-generation hard drives will have greatly increased storage density and capacity. II-VI offers infrared laser components for a wide range of computing applications such as optical mice and trackpads, 3D cameras and sensors, and read/write heads for heat-assisted magnetic recording.
Machine learning and computer vision technology have enabled rapid progress in the field of robotics. As a result, domestic robots have become smarter and more affordable, and are increasingly taking over mundane household tasks such as floor and window cleaning, pool cleaning, or lawn mowing. In the future, their use will extend into new areas including education, entertainment, and elderly assistance. II-VI offers laser light sources and optical components for range sensors and 3D cameras that enable navigation, object recognition, and obstacle avoidance in domestic robots.