According to a new supply chain report today, Fabless IC firm Himax Technologies has begun shipments of chips based on wafer-level optics (WLO) technology to Apple, according to industry sources. The solution is reportedly a key component of the iPhone X's face ID sensor. Patently Apple noted in a report in August that industry sources had claimed that "Himax is also among the component suppliers for Apple's 3D sensing technology."
ChipMOS Technologies will also see revenues generated from orders for WLO chips increase substantially later in 2017 as the backend house has cut into the supply chain for the iPhone X by partnering with Himax, said the sources.
ChipMOS' revenues from orders for WLO chips are expected to reach between NT$50 million (US$1.66 million) and NT$60 million, up from the current NT$20-30 million, the sources indicated.
With non-Apple vendors looking to follow suit by bringing facial recognition features to their new devices, Himax and its backend partner ChipMOS are both expected to enjoy a pull-in of orders for WLO chips in 2018 as they've signed a deal with Qualcomm to bring facial recognition to Android smartphones in 2018.
While it's of no consequence today, it should be noted that Himax technologies also provides technology for AR style glasses, head mounted displays and embedded projectors that could work into future Apple products.
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