There’s an interesting rumour in the town that Google is in the process of buying Lytro, maker of light field cameras. Though the two company yet officially attest to the deal, the rumoured price is said to be between $40 million and $25 million – a rash plunge from the once $360 million valuation.
Perhaps it’s not a coincidence that the search giant launched a Welcome to Light Fields app few days ago, which shows what can be done in VR. Light field cameras capture much more than regular 2D cameras, allowing the user to look around while rendering realistic depth and perspective.
The employee headcount might actually be negatively affected, however probably all 59 light field patents will be taken over by Google.
Google has a shown great interest in VR, but there’s more to that. Dual Pixel autofocus tech was used for portrait mode in the Pixel 2 and Dual Pixel is similar to light field cameras.
For each pixel, it captures light incoming from two slightly different angles. Lytro cameras capture light from many more angles. What could those Lytro patents do for the next Pixels?