Augmented Reality

Technology that overlays digital content onto the real world.

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AR will revolutionize user interfaces in the present and future. In the enterprise, it is already having a profound impact on enterprise applications, where tangible ROI can be seen across a variety of tasks. Clients whose business processes involve maintenance of complex machinery, remote expert assistance to support limited technical expertise, or visual guidance in assembly, warehousing, or ...

What's New

Lux Research analysts and the Lux Intelligence Engine have added the following recent augmented reality developments.

New Lux Content

A Digital Transformation Framework: Applying Digital Tools to Improve Business Operations: One of the key elements to a successful digital transformation is laying out a clear vision. This involves designing new digitally-enhanced products and customer-centric digital business models to go with them as well as identifying business processes that are suitable for digitalization. In a previous report, we presented a framework that B2B and B2C companies across different sectors could use to create customer-centric digital business models. In this report, we present another framework that companies can use to identify suitable opportunities for digitalization in internal processes as well as the right digital tools to enable that transformation. We use case studies from various sectors to highlight how to use this framework.

What are microLED displays, and why should you care?: These days, microLED displays are garnering a lot of attention – think "rising star." This year's CES featured Samsung's 146-inch microLED modular display called "The Wall." Apple's 2014 acquisition of LuxVue, followed by rumors of microLED displays for its Apple Watch 3 series and a secret fabrication facility near its Cupertino headquarters, has everybody in the display and electronics industries focusing squarely on this micro-sized technology. The microLED is on the cusp of changing the literal face of consumer electronics, but the question is "Why?"Looking back on its origins, you won't find anything splashy or glamorous. The microLED has existed since 2000, when a group of Texas Tech University researchers filed a patent claiming discovery of a "micro-sized LED." In the decade following its inception, not much fuss was made over microLEDs. MicroLEDs, as a semiconductor device, are not a new or innovative technology. When comparing the material stackup to LEDs, you'll find it is exactly the same; it's still a p-n junction made of direct band gap semiconductor materials. If there's nothing new in the material itself, you might ask, "What's all the fuss about?" To answer that question, focus on its larger cousin, the LED.These days, LEDs are mainly used for two purposes, backlighting LCD displays or as a pixel in large digital signage, such as a billboard or jumbotron. The LED TVs that are sold today are actually LCDs with LED backlighting. The reason is, unlike OLEDs, LEDs are too big to make up the pixel in a display. Using an LED would be equivalent to looking at the same jagged, blocky characters associated with early 1990s computer displays. This is where the microLED steps in.A microLED is small enough to create the high resolution (HD, 4K, 8K, or higher) that is the de facto standard in today's flat-panel displays. Furthermore, unlike OLEDs, it doesn't rely on an organic emitter, meaning longer lifetimes and higher durability along with higher color purity, brighter output, faster response, and immunity to burn-in. In addition, comparing (see Fig. 1) material stackups of microLED and OLED, microLED has the advantage here too with a thinner composition, ultimately leading to thinner, bezel-less displays, as the display can now be more easily wrapped around the tight angles of a screen's edges. It also means that microLEDs as a component cost will be much cheaper, as they are not reliant on the very costly iridium that blue OLED emitters are.                            Fig. 1 Performance comparisons of TFT-LCD, OLED, and microLED displaysKnowing these advantages, you're probably asking, "What's the holdup? Why don't we have microLED displays right now?" To answer this question, you only need to examine how microLED displays are manufactured. While microLED technology is not a new concept, manufacturing these devices is an unsolved problem. There are number of methods used to manufacture the displays, such as microfluidic assembly, chip bonding, wafer bonding, and thin film transfer. However, none of them are cost-effective or make sense for wide-scale manufacturing due to the low yields, high costs, and lengthy times involved. For these reasons, it will be 10 years or more before we see widespread adoption of microLED displays as we see with LCDs and now with OLED displays. However, we have seen progress where a couple of microLED display products will be offered to very niche markets. In the next insight, we'll explore the major inhibitors and innovation opportunities for microLED displays.

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