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Snap Acquires AR Display Firm ‘WaveOptics’ In Its Largest Acquisition Till Date

WaveOptics will be focusing on developing Snap’s upcoming AR Spectacles.

Snap Acquires AR Display Firm 'WaveOptics' In Its Largest Acquisition Till Date

Snap revealed on May 20 that it has acquired the British AR Display firm WaveOptics for a record $500 Million – the company’s largest acquisition deal till date. The $500 Million deal will be paid half in stock and the other portion through stock or cash in the coming 2 years.

WaveOptics will be working as part of Snap to build the upcoming Spectacles AR glasses. Snap’s first AR glasses come with specifications that include: a 26.3-degree field of view, AR effects called Lenses, four built-in microphones, two speakers, and a built-in touchpad. The Spectacles, however, aren’t for sale and will exclusively be provided to creators.

In an interview with CNBC, Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snap Inc., revealed that although AR tech has a long way to go until it reaches the general public, Snap has continued to work alongside WaveOptics for many years to develop AR waveguides as a long-term investment:

“These are really sophisticated and complex components. It takes many many years to really push the boundaries of what’s possible – to increase the brightness, to increase the field of view which makes Spectacles much more immersive, to reduce weights to make the product more wearable, So – this really represents a long term investment in the future of Spectacles.”

Many tech firms seem to also believe in investing long term. Google and Facebook have recently announced their plans to develop waveguides. Moreover, Apple’s AR headset is said to hit the market in 2022.