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Lidar Is Finally Becoming a Real Business


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This summer, three leading lidar makers have done major fundraising rounds that included releasing public data on their financial performance.

Credit: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg/Getty Images

For years, the lidar business has had a lot of hype but not a lot of hard numbers. Dozens of lidar startups have touted their impressive technology, but until recently it wasn't clear who, if anyone, was actually gaining traction with customers.

That's starting to change. This summer, three leading lidar makers have done major fundraising rounds that included releasing public data on their financial performance.

The latest lidar maker to release financial data is Ouster, which announced a $42-million round in a Tuesday blog post. That post also revealed a striking statistic: The company says it now has 800 customers.

That's interesting because we can compare it fairly directly to two other prominent lidar companies that have released data in recent months. Velodyne, which has been considered the industry leader for the past decade, revealed in July that it had 300 customers.

The lidar startup Luminar hasn't revealed its number of customers, but it disclosed two other figures in August: The company has 50 commercial partners and expects to sell roughly 100 lidar sensors in 2020.

 

From Wired
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