Technology

Why Apple is putting $400 million into lasers

Why Apple is putting $400 million into lasers

Finisar has clarified that the $390M contribution from Apple's Advanced Manufacturing Fund announced yesterday is not an investment in the company, but rather an agreed payment for anticipated future orders.

We talked about Finisar a few days ago, when a research note from an analyst suggested that the American company has received Apple certification for a critical iPhone X component, vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) that make things like Face ID and Animoji possible.

The company announced in a press release on Wednesday that it is investing $390 million in laser chip maker Finisar.

AirPods take advantage of these lasers for proximity sensors, stopping and starting music every time you take out an AirPod from your ear.

Beyond R&D, Finisar will build a new 700,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Sherman, Texas, where it also plans to hire roughly 500 people to staff its engineering, technical and maintenance teams. (Apple PR also produced this "feature" report about how the partnership will be "transforming the future of this Texas town.") Apple has also doled out $200 million from the fund to Corning, which supplies glass for iPhones. The company runs a plant in Allen, just outside of Dallas. After all, why invest almost $400 million into a company that only makes this particular type of smartphone component?

"We're thrilled to partner with Finisar over the next several years to push the boundaries of VCSEL technology and the applications they enable", said Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer, in a statement today.

Apple Inc. has made its second notable investment this week - this time in facial recognition technology company Finisar Corp.

The investment will enable Apple to "get better supply and better pricing, and it makes it more hard for Android phones to compete", said Gene Munster, a longtime Apple watcher at Loup Ventures.


  • Roy Moore accuser amends part of her account about inscription

    Roy Moore accuser amends part of her account about inscription

    Senate, but softened her earlier insistence that an inscription in her high school yearbook was entirely written in Moore's hand. Specifically, I do not know any of these women, nor have I ever engaged in sexual misconduct with any woman, ' Moore said.
    At Least 3 Dead In New Mexico High School Shooting

    At Least 3 Dead In New Mexico High School Shooting

    Local and state police are investigating the shooting alongside agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation . Padilla called the scene "chaotic" and said there was a massive law enforcement presence.
    OnePlus 5T Star Wars limited edition sale will be on December 15

    OnePlus 5T Star Wars limited edition sale will be on December 15

    As you can see in the image attached above, the phone sports a white paint job, while the Star Wars logo lives at the bottom. The smartphone has 6.01-inch full optic AMOLED display with full-HD+ (1080 x 2160) resolution and 18:9 aspect ratio.
  • John Oliver Calls Out Dustin Hoffman To His Face Over Groping Accusations

    John Oliver Calls Out Dustin Hoffman To His Face Over Groping Accusations

    After a leaden beat, Hoffman replied, "Do you believe the stuff that you read?" "You're right I wasn't there", Oliver said. More than anything, Oliver was giving Hoffman an opportunity to address that, and to prove that he's learned.
    LaVar Ball reportedly pulls son LiAngelo Ball from UCLA

    LaVar Ball reportedly pulls son LiAngelo Ball from UCLA

    The announcement comes just two months after Ball made a decision to pull his other son, LaMelo , out of Chino Hills High School . LiAngelo Ball's collegiate career at UCLA has ended without ever stepping foot on the court for a regular-season game.
    Google Safe Browsing Extends to Android Apps Requiring User and Device Data

    Google Safe Browsing Extends to Android Apps Requiring User and Device Data

    For example, the in-app disclosure must be shown within the app itself and not just the Play Store listing or on a website. Google plans to show these warnings via the Google Play Protect service that's built into the official Play Store app.
  • European Union  leaders agree Brexit talks can move on to phase two

    European Union leaders agree Brexit talks can move on to phase two

    European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker commended May, saying she is a "tough, smart, polite, friendly negotiator". Everything has to be wrapped up next fall to leave time for parliaments to ratify any final Brexit deal before March 2019.
    Heavy snow cancel flights in UK

    Heavy snow cancel flights in UK

    CrossCountry passengers battled with a previously announced strike as well as a landslide between Birmingham and Bristol. Heathrow administration suggested that passengers check the status of their flights prior to traveling to the airport.
    N. Korea Agrees to Regular Communication with UN

    N. Korea Agrees to Regular Communication with UN

    Before leaving for Pyongyang , Mr Feltman held talks in China, North Korea's historic ally and main trading partner. North Korea is also concerned about the effects worldwide sanctions have had on the delivery of humanitarian aid.
  • FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Not as cold tonight; cloudy skies through the weekend

    FIRST ALERT FORECAST: Not as cold tonight; cloudy skies through the weekend

    A cold front will swing through the area early this morning bringing breezy and cooler conditions for your Tuesday . Most of Southwest Louisiana will cool down to the mid 40s, while a couple places may reach the upper 30s.
    'What I am detained for?' Comedian Hannibal Buress arrested in Miami

    'What I am detained for?' Comedian Hannibal Buress arrested in Miami

    The officers tell Buress he is suspected of trespassing, but no trespassing charges were filed according to the Daily Mail . According to the Miami Herald , a video has begun circulating online of Buress in a heated argument with the Miami police.
    Skirball Fire forces closure of the 405 in Los Angeles

    Skirball Fire forces closure of the 405 in Los Angeles

    The 405 North freeway remains closed between the 10 and the 101 freeways, making it challenging to access some local businesses. Both sides of the 210 Freeway were reopened Wednesday morning as crews continue to battle the Creek Fire near Sylmar.