Investors reacted to unconfirmed reports that Google (GOOG) (GOOGL) will no longer use Himax's display chips in its Google Glass wearable computer. Shares of the semiconductor design company fell more than 14% intraday as investors debated whether to sell on the questionable news. The stock was the most discussed on StockTwits.com by 3:30 p.m.
Emails to Google's press team and media contacts at Himax asking for comment were not immediately returned Tuesday.
Traders had anticipated that Google and Himax's relationship was for the long term. Google took a 6.3% stake in the display subsidiary of Himax Technologies last July. At the time, Himax said Google's stake would fund the necessary upgrades and investments needed to expand production of the "liquid crystal on silicon" chips used in Google Glass and other wearable displays and pico-projection devices. Under the agreement, Google has the option to increase its stake in Himax's display subsidiary to 14.8% by July 22, 2014.
Some investors said that Google and Himax were still partners. They argued that Google would eventually exercise the option to own more of the company, leaving investors who sold shares today in a panic wishing they had a higher risk threshold.