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Om Malik: MEMS startup snags $37M to make accelerometers smaller and cheaper
2014-06-25 5:46am -07:00T Visit Om Malik


Outtake:

Entrepreneur Bill Lee has been developing a new type of semiconductor process that makes tiny accelerometers. When embedded in devices these little machines could change the types of games played on cheap handsets or eliminate the spasm-like head nod used to activate Google Glass.

As the CEO of mCube, a five-year old startup, Lee has just raised a $37 million Series C round of funding from existing investors Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, MediaTek, iD Ventures America, and DAG Ventures. New investors include Keytone Ventures, SK Telecom (China) Ventures and Korea Investment Partners, bringing the total money his startup has raised to $70 million.

Already mCube has shipped more than 60 million of its tiny microelectromechanical machines or MEMS. What’s novel about the company is how it builds them. A MEM is a type of semiconductor that is used to translate the physical aspects of our world (temperature, movement, light, pressure) and convert it into something digital our computers can read.

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Making MEMS involves building a traditional silicon semiconductor and then wiring the analog-sensing component to the silicon. What mCube has figured out is how to make the...

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