When you hear about companies raising tons of money for “smart glass,” the first thing that hits your mind might be something augmented reality-related like the HoloLens.
But View, which just closed a $200 million funding round after securing $70 million from BlackRock alongside an earlier investment from TIAA, is using smart glass to make better windows that adjust to the outdoor environment.
The internet-connected windows can be made more or less transparent via a smartphone app, eliminating the need for blinds. The windows also can automatically adjust based on weather conditions so that they are ready when the beating sun comes out or you’re trying to make the most of your natural light during a more cloudy day.
Putting the production pipelines in place to put smart glass on 20 million square feet worth of buildings is expensive; this raise puts the company’s total up to nearly $650 million in disclosed funding.
“Our demand has gone up significantly where we are now production-limited as a company,” CEO Rao Mulpuri told TechCrunch. “This funding is to drive that growth that we are seeing.”
Mulpuri believes that people’s windows will see more and more tech get stuffed into them in the next several decades, and says View is already researching what’s next, like embedding transparent displays into their windows.
The company is focusing the majority of its efforts on North American markets. Most recently, it was announced that more than 66,000 square feet of View’s dynamic glass will be used for the redesign of Terminal 1 at SFO airport. The company has 150 commercial installations in process and has finished more than 350 projects.