Google is likely to lead other investors in a huge investment of about $500 million dollars in Magic Leap, a Florida-based technology company, a report said Monday, adding that what Magic Leap exactly does is still “mostly behind wraps.” According to Magic Leap’s website, the company’s products deliver “cinematic reality.”
Google is leading a $500 million funding round for Magic Leap, and venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz could be one of the investors in the consortium, Re/Code reported, citing sources. Magic Leap, which has kept a low profile until recently, announced in February that it had raised $50 million to develop its proprietary technology platform.
The company’s website suggests that its work could be related to a highly advanced form of virtual reality and while what Magic Leap does is not entirely clear, CEO Rony Abovitz has said that the company is working on something that it believes “will be the most natural and human-friendly wearable computing interface in the world.”
The site’s homepage shows a very realistic, animated elephant moving around in a person’s palms.
According to Re/Code, Abovitz has said that the company can deliver a more realistic 3D experience than currently available technologies, including the Oculus Rift headset.
In March, Facebook announced that it would acquire Oculus VR, the company behind Oculus Rift, for a total of $2 billion — $400 million in cash and $1.6 billion in stock. Oculus Rift offers a virtual and augmented reality experience, which Abovitz has called outdated.
“Those are old terms — virtual reality, augmented reality. They have legacy behind them. They are associated with things that didn’t necessarily deliver on a promise or live up to expectations,” Abovitz told the South Florida business Journal in February. “We have the term ‘cinematic reality’ because we are disassociated with those things. … When you see this, you will see that this is computing for the next 30 or 40 years.”
According to Re/Code, Magic Leap’s technology will show users high-resolution 3D images right in front of their eyes, probably by projecting them using some sort of wearable technology, along with the use of several angles and depths to enhance the visual experience.
Abovitz previously co-founded a surgical robotics company called Mako Surgical, which was acquired by Stryker, a medical technology firm, for $1.65 billion in September 2013.