Reflecting on 2023, we provide a detailed account of our milestones and challenges, offering a clear roadmap for our production plans in 2024.
This post summarizes the last YouTube live on December 18th 2023.
We're reaching the close of 2023, a pivotal year for us, and we're preparing to transition into 2024 with lessons learned and the next steps for our production.
DVT1: Design Validation Testing. At the beginning of this year, we received the first production units named DVT1 which were manufactured in December of the previous year. These initial 200 units, although not finished with the intended matte look due to overly polished molds, were pivotal for internal testing and partner distribution. They lacked final packaging and required significant hardware refinement—specifically, 50 hardware corrections were necessary to move forward from this prototype stage.
DVT2. By August, our journey had advanced to the 'DVT2 batch', which signified a crucial phase where the product is near complete. With 300 units received in early September, these units were judged commercially viable. Despite this, we encountered minor issues, such as scratches on the devices caused by the packaging during transport and an unsatisfactory finish on the plastic. Plus, the microphone array had wiring issues which led to its malfunction. These were identified and corrected in subsequent batches.
PVT: Product Validation Testing. The next batch, comprised of 500 units and known as PVT units, represented the first run of mass production, scheduled to commence immediately after the Chinese New Year. This scheduling allowed us to align the PVT closely with mass production, creating a seamless transition. However, this was contingent on the successful allocation of financial resources. Overall, the financial aspect of our operation has been challenging.
We aimed to initiate mass production, which requires manufacturing at least 1000 headsets per month, by the end of 2023. However, we decided to take a more prudent approach, delaying the PVT stage until we ensure the necessary funds.
This is largely due to the timing of our fundraising, which we anticipate will conclude successfully between January and February 2024. Consequently, we've scheduled the start of PVT unit manufacturing for February 10th.
Our Kickstarter campaign has demonstrated a strong demand for our product and has been instrumental in propelling us forward. The campaign's success, coupled with the continued interest we’ve garnered, underscores the market's readiness for our headsets.
Our team has excelled at overcoming technical challenges, but the slow pace of securing investments has been a source of frustration. Despite this, we remain committed to establishing Lynx as a European AR/VR market referent.
On the software front, we're excited to announce the upcoming release of update 1.1.8, which will introduce the ability to deactivate lens distortion and offer an improved hand-tracking service. We've also achieved compatibility with the Chronos loader, paving the way for cross-ecosystem application development.
EVENTS AND COLLABORATIONS
We're also engaging with the broader industry, as seen in our recent participation at I/ITSEC in Orlando, which showcased Lynx Mixed Reality’s potential for defense and industrial applications.
Additionally, we've formed a consortium with European partners to explore mixed reality in industry and joined the Coalition for Open Digital Ecosystems to advocate for interoperability in line with the European Union's Digital Market Act.
Lastly, we are proud to announce our collaboration with Jean-Michel Jarre, a pioneer in electronic music, for a mixed reality concert at Palace of Versailles. This event not only represents a significant milestone for cultural applications of our technology but also serves as a powerful testament to the potential of Lynx's headsets.
As we conclude, we acknowledge with appreciation the constant support from our backers, clients, partners, and investors. The past year has presented significant challenges; however, these have served to strengthen our commitment rather than diminish our momentum.
Looking ahead to 2024, we’re looking forward to delivering the PVT units and keenly anticipate the diverse applications Lynx-R1 users will develop, underscoring the practical impact of our technology in the market.
We wish all our community happy holidays and a great start to 2024!
Questions & Answers
Here we present some of the questions and answers from our YouTube Live session.
On a scale of 0 to 10, how hard would it be to create a hardware production in the European Union to avoid incoming conflict in Taiwan? A bit like the Raspberry Pi industry.
Building a hardware production capacity in Europe is part of our roadmap, particularly for sectors like defense, where geographical manufacturing can be critical. However, the complexity of modern semiconductor supply chains makes complete sovereignty challenging. Most high-end chips, like those we use, are part of an intricate global network. So, while establishing a plant in Europe can help mitigate risk, it doesn’t equate to full protection from geopolitical conflicts affecting the supply chain.
What's the timeline for Transparent Edition headsets?
The Transparent Edition headsets will go into production once we commence the mass production phase with the Lynx-R1. Assuming PVT units are manufactured on February 10th and mass production begins in March, we anticipate the Transparent Edition to be manufactured between April and May.
Are you going to show the controllers during this livestream?
The controllers will not be shown today, but we plan to showcase them early next year. The design is finalized, and the team has done exceptional work on them.
What do you have as a plan to make developers use the platform and stay?
To attract and retain developers, we're implementing low fees and offering support. There is no charge to publish on our platform, and we only take a 15% commission on sales. Post-fundraising, we intend to allocate a budget to assist developers in porting or creating new apps for our platform. We're building the infrastructure in stages and are currently in the learning phase, actively engaging developers in the discussion.
Is it hard to create a connect website to allow developers of Lynx and clients to find themselves to help us live life on the device?
In an upcoming firmware update, you'll be able to link your device to your Lynx account, enabling checks on app acquisitions and managing your devices through our website. This includes accessing beta updates and adjusting factory parameters like camera and IMU calibration.
Is an eye-tracking module for Lynx-R1 still in discussion?
Yes, we will have more to share about eye tracking by the end of January, likely during the SPIE show.