Light’s 16-lens camera receives $30m Alphabet arm backing

GV endorsement takes Silicon Valley start-up’s funding for L16 device to $65 million

Light’s L16:  the $1,700-device is a little larger than a smartphone and can create images of up to 52 megapixels

Light’s L16: the $1,700-device is a little larger than a smartphone and can create images of up to 52 megapixels

 

Light, a Silicon Valley start-up behind a cameras-in-a-camera product, has raised $30 million from Alphabet’s venture capital arm in a challenge to photography groups such as Canon and Nikon.

Light claims its L16 can replace a digital camera with interchangeable lenses with a single unit containing 16 cameras. Its “computational imaging” software combines several pictures in one high-resolution photo.

The $1,700 device, a little larger than a smartphone, can create images of up to 52 megapixels. It boasts high, lowlight performance and zoom functions.

The backing from GV takes Light’s funding to $65 million, though it is months away from shipping its first product.

Some analysts have questioned how large the market for such an expensive camera will be, given the ubiquity of smartphones. “People use the camera in their smartphone because it’s always there with them,” Carolina Milanesi, analyst at Creative Strategies, said.

“For a lot of people, what the smartphone gives them is more than enough.”

Light’s initial pricing for the L16 was “amazingly high” for a brand that would be unfamiliar to most photographers, she said.

– ( 2016 The Financial Times Limited)