Neonode Working With Apple In CarPlay And HP Printers Finally Gets Announced

Apr.15.14 | About: Neonode, Inc. (NEON)

Summary

Neonode just puts up a link on their website, which unequivocally shows Apple's CarPlay being demonstrated in a Volvo XC90, which uses a Neonode optical infrared touchscreen.

Neonode finally announced that their huge printer licensee is Hewlett-Packard, which is now shipping its first 3 (of many) printers using Neonode optical touch technology.

Neonode's new PC head just arrived following a 33 year stint at HP, where he ran the printer UI business, which spent two years incorporating Neonode's optical touch solutions.

On April 14, Neonode (NEON) posted a remarkable video on their website, which essentially confirms that Volvo's (OTCPK:VOLVY) new telematics infotainment system, which is powered by Apple's (AAPL) CarPlay, will be shipping in the XC90 this fall.

The touchscreen for this Apple-powered device is using Neonode's MultiSensing technology. With Apple now getting quite familiar with both Neonode's patents and touchscreens, which were used to demo Apple's groundbreaking CarPlay auto system, I wonder how long it is before Apple decides to do something with NEON (takeout, licensing, and/or partnership).

In addition, Neonode announced on April 14 that Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) is their big printer OEM licensee, which they have been alluding to for close to two years.

As management (and my printer OEM checks) has mentioned numerous times, it takes about 2 years for a printer to make it from a design win to earning revenues, which is also why printers typically have two year life/design cycles. This is because the printer requires 6-8 months of designing, a whopping 10 months of testing (because printers are made from inexpensive and constantly-moving parts), and 4+ months pre-launch channel-inventory building.

This is why Neonode, which first signed Hewlett-Packard ("HP") up in 1H 12, is right-on-time with its first, of what promises to be, many future HP printer launch announcements. As management has stated previously, Neonode has won the overwhelming majority of a big printer OEM (which is now clearly HP), which will be rolling out dozens of new models with Neonode technology over the next two years.

Remember that HP sells over 44M printers annually and is #1 in the ~112M unit printer market, according to IDC. Considering that Neonode indicated (as recent as the Ascendiant call on March 28) that they have captured a majority of the "big printer" account through at least 2018, we should expect HP printers to become a $20M+ annuity for NEON by 2016 (ramping from $4M in 2014 to $10M+ in 2015).

What makes this more fascinating is that Neonode just hired Clarence King. Mr. King worked at HP for 33 years, running the HP printer user interface business, before retiring early to move to Neonode, where he is running their rapidly emerging PC business. As Clarence stated unequivocally on the recent Ascendiant call, he decided to risk all the marbles after having worked with Neonode on HP's printers for ~2 years, and witnessing firsthand the caliber and disruptive quality of Neonode's optical infrared solutions.

Bear in mind, that Clarence also indicated that he had a chance to see every other technology during his stint at HP, and chose NEON over all else.

I think the 10.3M shorts should start getting nervous, as NEON is about to put up numbers in 2Q with printers ramping, and should be gaining some serious PC touch market share for 2015.

Disclosure: I am long NEON. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.