AMS reports an operating loss of $48.6-million but looks to facial recognition technology to help bolster revenues. (Image credit: AMS via Google+)


There is both bad news and good news regarding Austrian sensor manufacturer AMS and their latest financial report for the second quarter and first half of 2018. According to the report, AMS revenues generated in that second quarter were down 42%, equaling 252.8-million compared to the first quarter but up 18% for the same time period in 2017. The company reported an operating loss of $48.6-million over the last three months after growing a profit of $1.6-million from the year below. That’s the bad news.


The good news is that despite the revenue loss in some sectors, AMS is actually picking up more orders for their optical sensing and other facial recognition technologies, including a partnership with Xiaomi that dropped AMS’s VCSEL (Vertical Cavity Surface-Emitting Laser) array into the company’s flagship Mi8 Explorer Edition smartphone.


AMS also hooked up with OmniVision to develop tightly aligned structured light systems based on both companies’ respective sensing technologies. To that end, AMS has also acquired German-based ixellence, known for their expertise in DOE dot pattern design and 3D imaging (ix3D and ixMAT) platforms.



Continuing on the 3D imaging trend, AMS dropped some funds into US-based Bellus3D, which develops 3D scanning cameras and apps for mobile devices, including the Face Camera Pro for Android-based smartphones and the FaceApp for the iPhone X. AMS hopes to advance their 3D scanning platforms using the company’s proprietary pattern projector- AKA BELICE-SD, which create high-accuracy depth maps from low-texture images.


Rounding out AMS’ facial recognition endeavors, the company is looking to cooperate with their Taiwan-based VCSEL vendor HLJ Technology to refine the hardware and establish a dedicated chip process manufacturing line co-owned by both companies, which is expected to create new business opportunities in the short term.


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