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Lytro open to partnering with smartphone makers, executive suggests

Amar Toor, @amartoo
January 25, 2012
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Now that its famed light field camera has finally become official, Lytro is looking to the future, with an eye, apparently, toward the cellphone market. During a recent interview with PC World, Lytro executive chairman Charles Chi described his company's new sensor in greater detail, and talked at length about its purportedly superior battery life. He also divulged a few hints about Lytro's roadmap. When asked whether the firm would ever license its technology to a smartphone manufacturer, Chi confirmed that Lytro has "the capital to do that, the capability in the company to do that, and... the vision to execute," before launching into an explanation of what it would take for such an initiative to succeed:

If we were to apply the technology in smartphones, that ecosystem is, of course, very complex, with some very large players there. It's an industry that's very different and driven based on operational excellence. For us to compete in there, we'd have to be a very different kind of company. So if we were to enter that space, it would definitely be through a partnership and a codevelopment of the technology, and ultimately some kind of licensing with the appropriate partner.

Far from a confirmation, to be sure, but it seems like the handset market is at least on Lytro's radar. Read the full Q&A at the link below.

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