By Marcia Heroux Pounds, Sun Sentinel
Magic Leap, the Plantation-based startup that has raised $1.9 billion in financing and now employs thousands in South Florida, introduced its first product on Wednesday, December 20, 2017.
“Magic Leap One, Creator Edition” is a wearable computer that combines Magic Leap’s “Digital Lightfield” technology, visual perception and machine learning.
The company said it will let users interact with digital content in the real world. A price is not available yet, said Julia Gaynor, spokeswoman for Magic Leap. The first product is geared toward the “creator community,” which includes developers and the entertainment industry that could use the device to create content, she said.
But Gaynor said she expects that “very excited early adopters will buy this product ….we want other people to come on the journey with us,” Gayor said. No technical expertise is needed, however, for an “out-of-the-box experience.”
So where can you buy the product? You can’t yet — shipping won’t start until an undisclosed date in 2018, she said. No orders are being taken at this time. But those interested can sign up to be notified of shipping on Magic Leap’s website, magicleap.com https://www.magicleap.com.
Magic Leap announced its first product on its website Wednesday, where visitors can get a glimpse of how the device operates, and via email.
The company describes its technology as generating digital light blended with natural light “to produce lifelike digital objects that coexist in the real world. This advanced technology allows our brain to naturally process digital objects the same way we do real-world objects, making it comfortable to use for long periods of time.”
Gaynor said the device “understands where you are and where other things are and where the environment is,” she said. Asked whether two people could wear the products and interact, she responded, “There are all kinds of possibilities.”
“Where we are in our life cycle, we felt we were ready to share with the world where we are. Until now, we were working hard behind the scenes,” she said. “Now we’re ready to show it to the world.”
Gaynor said there was no pressure from investors to launch a product.
Major investors in Magic Leap include Google and Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. Technology blogs and websites have taken Magic Leap to task for raising so much money but not yet producing a product. The Magic Leap One is likely to be one of many products in the pipeline as the company has filed more than 100 patents.
At Miami’s eMerge Americas conference in June, founder and CEO Rony Abovitz wouldn’t say exactly when Magic Leap’s first product would launch, what the product was, or what it would cost. He did say that the product “is being priced for affordability of a ‘premium’ consumer device.”
Magic Leap is eligible for a package of $9 million in state and local incentives for its $150 million capital investment in renovating the former Motorola building in Plantation for its headquarters and creating 725 jobs. The company has easily surpassed those hiring numbers in recent years.
Abovitz was known previously for his medical device technology as a co-founder of Davie-based Mako Surgical, which was sold to Stryker Corp. He founded Magic Leap in 2011.
This story will be updated. Check back for more information.