Magic Leap has not yet set a date to unveil its mixed reality technology, and didn’t do so at a recent Fortune conference in Aspen. There, Magic Leap founder/chief executive Rony Abovitz and chief marketing officer Brian Wallace said the technology is “very real” and “not a research project anymore.” Some listeners detected a hint that a product might be released this fall, but Abovitz and Wallace never made an overt statement. The most they would say is that the public would see its products “soonish.”
TechCrunch quotes Abovitz describing how the 600-person company is operating in a former Motorola factory in Fort Lauderdale. “We have production lines that look like aircraft carriers with class 100 cleanrooms [which feature controlled levels of contamination],” he says. “That’s running right now. We’re debugging our high-volume production line. It’s [being] made in the U.S., this summer. So we’re in that go mode, and hopefully soonish, the public will see [our products].”
Abovitz did share some information about the company’s plans, noting that it will “focus first on games and entertainment,” but also sees uses in “e-commerce, healthcare, and workplace productivity.” Wallace says he believes that, “in the “2020s, 70 percent of the people in this room will be wearing a device like Magic Leap.”
The two executives also stressed the company’s work with outside developers, in particular Lucasfilm where, they revealed, there is a “secret lab.” There are, says Abovitz, “already external developers working on our systems day in and day out, creating content and experiences.”
Describing Magic Leap as “building a full-stack computing company,” Abovitz reports that they have taken on “the whole problem, including the manufacturing… to deliver something that never existed before and there was no way to do it unless we created everything from scratch.”
“We give you a neurologically true visual perception. As long as you aren’t touching something, our digital objects, environments, and people really are neurologically true,” he says. “It’s one of those things that you have to experience to believe.”
Magic Leap, which has raised $1.4 billion, has a stellar pedigree, with investors including Alibaba, Andreessen Horowitz, and Google. Google chief executive Sundar Pichai is a board member, and filmmaker Peter Jackson is an advisory board member.
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