Imaging startup Light is exiting the smartphone business

Light’s push into smartphones was an inevitability. Sure, the startup turned honchoes with its pricey L1 6 camera, but these days portable photography is almost exclusively the domain of the handset. Early last year, the answer arrived in the form of the trypophobia-inducing Nokia 9 PureView.

In a category where manufacturers scooted to add more cameras, the PureView had the most, with a five-hexagonal array. It was new, innovative and for most, it was overkill. At the least, nonetheless, it generated Nokia/ HMD some bragging rights and managed to set the handset apart in one of “the worlds largest” heatedly rivalry areas of the smartphone hardware hasten.

But Light is getting out of the smartphone sport. Ultimately, the competitor may have just been too stiff for a small startup, especially with numerous creators working on their own native hardware and software solutions.

Light supported the move this week in an email to Android Authority, writing simply that it was “no longer operating in the smartphone industry.” It’s a surprising fragment of information, given that mobile partnerships seemed like the most logical way forward for the company, which drummed up a $121 million in a SoftBank-led round back in 2018. That Series D fetched the Palo Alto-based company’s total funding up to more than $181 million.

More recently, the committee is also signed deals with Sony and Xiaomi. No text on what such a move means for those partnerships going forward. Nor is it clear what life after smartphones looks like for Light. We’ve contacted out to the company for more insight into the business plan.

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