CES 2019 In The Rearview Mirror


At CES 2019, LiDAR companies were represented a plenty. An ever evolving and developing technology, many LiDAR companies are swept up in vying for success, concerns around fast changing events, market uncertainties, predicting who will emerge victorious and who will be absorbed, and who will find their niche when the technology reaches maturity. 


Making their presence felt, there were well funded established LiDAR leaders at CES like Velodyne LIDAR and Quanergy. There were also many niche marketers like Phantom Intelligence, a company focusing on Level 2 & 3 where regulations will first appear. They are out of Canada and have a license model.


Also quite impressive was seeing international entities in the LiDAR arena.  Australian company Bajara, the company name being Spanish for “to shuffle cards”, envision their LiDAR product becoming the size of a deck of cards. The founders’ resumes boast both telecom and optical sensing backgrounds.


Other LiDAR suppliers making their presence felt were Israeli company OPSYS and North Carolina-based Sense Photonics, a company partnering with Infineon. Another interesting player on the floor was Leddartech, leveraging its LiDAR platform with partners like ANSYS, Excelitas, Renesas, TriLumina, IDT, Lasertel, and Blickfeld. Also of interest was a number of LiDAR-focused companies raising their profiles in larger booths like Cepton, Ouster, and Luminar.


Predictions? LiDAR and related technologies will continue to be a fast-moving market in 2019. Look to see competitors branch out into markets beyond automotive as LiDAR moves into drones, agriculture, home delivery, robotics, artificial intelligence, and other applications.


Another favorite at CES, garnering significant press attention, 5G was quite the buzz, with numerous carriers poised for a much-awaited rollout. Alongside of the 5G evolution, new capabilities in cellular-device connectivity are rapidly growing in importance as costs and size are decreasing.


For example, Nimbelink’s cellular modem is enjoying greater sales growth. Interestingly, they are triangulating Wi-Fi and cellular signals for location applications. Other players in the cellular arena include Aeris and Digi. One final note, IoT connectivity vendors held their focus on CAT1 and CAT NB.


Predictions?  5G is still a marketing buzz word. The technology will initially impact terrestrial areas of coverage requiring streaming video as well as mobile applications. One good example, autonomous vehicles requiring streaming content will most likely be early 5G adopters.


A quick CES recap, other companies on the radar for 2019 and beyond include:

NDI: in the measurement business 40 years, recently added artificial and virtual reality to their portfolio of technologies. 

EPIC Semiconductor: medical chip company from Canada offers a highly integrated chip that “can feel” for one cent ($0.01).

XVIsio Technology: Machine-vision company from San Jose, is readying the launch of its high-speed visual simultaneous location and mapping (VSLAM) technology.

ROHM: a large multi-tech company, ROHM’s automotive tech combines three camera views in one rearview mirror.


Checkout articles at Sensors Online to stay on top of your LiDAR and 5G game: