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Saturday
Feb282015

Display Industry Technology News Roundup 2.28.2015

Image via Microsoft HoloLens

Microsoft unveils computer with ‘holographic’ display "Unlike competitors, Facebook-owned Occulus VR and Samsung, Microsoft aims not to immerse the user in an entirely virtual environment but instead to bring the virtual environment into the real world in the form of what it calls “interactive holograms”. HoloLens itself, an unassuming, futuristic-looking headset, will run the latest iteration of Microsoft’s Windows operating system, Windows 10. It is one of the first computers to operate solely using voice and gesture based commands. ...The transparent lenses in front of each eye are made up of three layers of glass, each corrugated with tiny grooves to form diffraction gratings.Visible light is projected onto the lens by a so-dubbed “light engine”, and is diffracted and reflected between the layers of glass, using constructive and destructive interference of the light waves to create a virtual object in the user’s field of view." via Electronics Weekly

Apple Inc. Teams Up With Japan Display For LCD Production "Apple is reportedly in talks with Japan Display to help finance an LCD display factory in Ishikawa something next year. Japanese publication, Nikkan Kogyo, has reported that the deal is still in the works, and Apple is expected to invest around 200 billion yen ($1.7 billion) into this strategic partnership. The factory would be responsible for manufacturing low-temperature polycrystalline silicon displays utilized in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Moreover, the Japanese publication states the factory will also be used to make OLED panels like the ones being used in the upcoming Apple Watch, slated for release in April." via Bidness Etc

Quantum dots: How nanocrystals can make LCD TVs better "Quantum dots are microscopic nanocrystals that glow a specific wavelength (i.e. color) when given energy. The exact color produced by the QD depends on its size: larger for longer wavelengths (redder colors), smaller for shorter wavelengths (bluer). That's a bit of an oversimplification, but that's the basic idea. Specific wavelengths of color is what we need to great an image on a television. Using the three primary colors of red, green, and blue, we can mix a full rainbow of teals, oranges, yellows, and more. Plasma and CRT televisions used phosphors to create red, green, and blue. All LCDs use color filters to do the same. There are multiple ways to use QDs in a display." via CNET

FlexEnable and Merck Take Major Step Forward in Plastic LCD Technology "A plastic LCD has been developed which is completely free of glass, instead using organic transistors on a plastic sheet, offering multiple benefits. Plastic LCDs have the potential of making products ten times thinner, more than ten times lighter and cheaper than conventional glass-based displays - all while delivering differentiating product benefits of being shatterproof and even conformal. The demonstrator was developed in a very short timeframe, and combines the key benefits of organic transistor technology (OTFT), including superior quality and yield. Ultimately, it shows a route to low-cost solutions for volume manufacturing with LCDs, the dominant display technology in the market today. FlexEnable has now demonstrated the world's first plastic LCD with active-matrix in-plane switching (IPS). It uses FlexEnable's OTFT array as well as liquid crystal (LC) and organic semiconductor materials from Merck. While the first demonstrator employs an IPS mode, this concept will be equally attractive for many other LC modes and applications such as e-readers, dynamic public signage and advertising. " via PR Newswire

Tech Time Machine: Screen and Display Technology History "'80s and '90s - Touchscreen Invades. IBM, Microsoft, Apple, HP and Atari are among just a few of the tech companies bringing touchscreen into the mainstream in this era. In 1992, IBM's Simon is the first phone with a touchscreen. FingerWorks, a gesture recognition company that is later acquired by Apple, produces a line of multi-touch products in 1998." via Mashable

Why are display makers looking to next-generation cars to drive growth? ""Previously, display makers saw little merit in auto displays because of their small volumes and slim margins ...but they are now revising their strategy as the market is growing," said Lee Byeong-hoon, a principal engineer at the South Korean unit of German auto parts giant Continental, the biggest buyer of automotive displays. Luxury cars already carry two or three displays and could have as many as nine in the near future, as safety and convenience features proliferate. Kia Motors' K9 sedan, for example, has five displays - an instrument panel, a centre information screen, two backseat displays and a "head-up" display projecting information onto the windshield. Future cars could add transparent side-window displays and replace rearview mirrors and side mirrors with screens, according to LG Display, the biggest liquid crystal display (LCD) maker." via The Star

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

How does rewritable paper print with light rather than ink "A new type of paper can be used and reused up to 20 times. What’s more, it doesn’t require any ink. Its designers think that this new technology could cut down on tons of waste — and save people tons of money. A special dye embedded in the paper makes it printable and rewritable. The dye goes from dark to clear and back when chemical reactions move electrons around. (Electrons are the subatomic particles that orbit in the outer regions of an atom.) The paper’s color-change chemical undergoes what are known as redox reactions. Redox is short for reduction and oxidation." via Student Science

Xerox licenses Thinfilm printed storage tech for smart labels "The Norwegian printed electronics firm Thinfilm has formed a strategic partnership with Xerox around printed storage. Xerox will license Thinfilm’s proprietary technology and make Thinfilm Memory labels, which have some very interesting characteristics. Each label, costing a few pennies, is a plastic tag that’s based on ferroelectric capacitors and allows for power-free archival storage in the 10-15-year range. This isn’t some data center technology though; we’re only talking 10-36 bits. They are however very rewriteable – the data can be rewritten 100,000 times. This means the labels are perfect for continually storing and refreshing the output of sensors." via Gigaom

Pixel QI is Officially out of Business "Pixel Qi first first established in 2008 by Mary Lou Jepson and her husband John Ryan took over the reigns as CEO in November 2012. Mary left the company in March of 2013 to become Head of Display Division at Google X. John followed her in September to become the Director Program Management at Google X. With a non-existent executive team and no display prospects for the future, for all sense and purposes, Pixel Qi is out of business. The company designs liquid crystal displays (LCDs) that can be largely manufactured using the existing manufacturing infrastructure for conventional LCDs. The advantage of Pixel Qi displays over conventional LCDs is mainly that they can be set to operate under transflective mode and reflective mode, improving eye-comfort, power usage, and visibility under bright ambient light." via Good e-Reader

How Quantum Dots Are Taking a Quantum Leap "Outside his career as a noted nanochemist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory director Paul Alivisatos is an avid photographer. To show off his photos, his preferred device is a Kindle Fire HDX tablet because “the color display is a whole lot better than other tablets,” he says. What he may neglect to mention to the viewer is that not only did he take the photograph, he also helped invent the nanotechnology allowing the viewer to see those brilliant greens, rich reds, and bold blues, all while using significantly less energy. In fact, the Kindle display utilizes a technology manufactured by Nanosys, a startup Alivisatos cofounded in 2001 to commercialize quantum dots. ...Since then, Berkeley Lab’s quantum dots have not only found their way into tablets, computer screens, and TVs, they are also used in biological and medical imaging tools, and now Alivisatos’ lab is exploring them for solar cell as well as brain imaging applications." via Controlled Environments

Japan Display unveils low-power screen for smartwatches "Japan Display’s new screen could reduce power consumption dramatically since it’s designed to show color text and graphics without a backlight. Not only does that mean the screens use less power than traditional LCD displays, but they’re also easier to view in direct sunlight. Japan Display says its screens also feature memory built into the pixels of the display, allowing a watch to display a static image without using much electricity." via Liliputing

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Glasses-free 3D could revolutionise advertising and cinema "In 2013, the young start-up company TriLite Technologies had the idea to develop this new kind of display, which sends beams of light directly to the viewers' eyes, andhas been working with the Vienna University of Technology to create the first prototype. Currently it only has a modest resolution of five pixels by three, but it clearly shows that the system works. 'We are creating a second prototype, which will display colour pictures with a higher resolution. But the crucial point is that the individual laser pixels work. Scaling it up to a display with many pixels is not a problem', says Jörg Reitterer (TriLite Technologies and PhD-student in the team of Professor Ulrich Schmid at the Vienna University of Technology)." via Daily Mail

Startup developing full-color holographic display for mobile devices images and video. "Fattal’s company, appropriately named Leia, will demonstrate a prototype of its new 3-D display next week at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Later this year it plans to release a small display module capable of producing full-color 3-D images and videos that are visible—with no special glasses—from 64 different viewpoints.Key to Leia’s technology is an invention by Fattal that takes advantage of advances in the ability to control the paths light takes at the nanoscale. He first revealed the concept, which Leia calls a “multiview backlight,” in a Nature paper published two years ago. At the time, Fattal was a researcher at HP Labs and his work applied to optical interconnects, which allow computers to exchange information encoded in light. But he realized that the idea could also be used to display holographic images, and he left Hewlett-Packard to pursue that idea." via MIT Technology Review

New Technology Will Make Fonts Look Great on Small Screens "Monotype debuted Spark, a technology that consumers can’t even buy. In fact, a measure of Spark’s success down the line might be how few, not how many, people notice it. That’s because Spark is a new software program from Monotype meant to make fonts on tiny screens, like on smartwatches and digital dashboards in cars, as intuitive and legible as the ones on your computer. The problem with fonts on small screens has to do with bitmap fonts, which get pre-coded into devices because they require less computational power. Unfortunately, those bitmap fonts are pixelated, so they won’t allow for the beauty and flexibility of rendered fonts—like Times New Roman or Helvetica—which scale more easily and can be found on bigger computer screens with plenty of power. That poses a problem for manufacturers peddling luxury goods, because a crappy screen display could easily cheapen even the most beautiful of devices. This where Monotype’s new software comes in." via Wired

Tackling the "achilles' heel" of OLED displays "Kateeva aims to “fix the last ‘Achilles’ heel’ of the OLED-display industry — which is manufacturing,” says Kateeva co-founder and scientific advisor Vladimir Bulovic, the Fariborz Maseeh Professor of Emerging Technology, who co-invented the technology. Called YIELDjet, Kateeva’s technology platform is a massive version of an inkjet printer. Large glass or plastic substrate sheets are placed on a long, wide platform. A component with custom nozzles moves rapidly, back and forth, across the substrate, coating it with OLED and other materials — much as a printer drops ink onto paper. An OLED production line consists of many processes, but Kateeva has developed tools for two specific areas — each using the YIELDjet platform. The first tool, called YIELDjet FLEX, was engineered to enable thin-film encapsulation (TFE). TFE is the process that gives thinness and flexibility to OLED devices; Kateeva hopes flexible displays produced by YIELDjet FLEX will hit the shelves by the end of the year." via R&D Magazine

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Magic Leap CEO says Stereoscopic 3D may cause permanent brain damage "Recently the CEO of a Google backed start up Magic Leap has claimed Microsoft's HoloLens could cause permanent brain damage and to no one's surprise Magic Leap has a 'better' and 'safer' competing product. Without giving any details Rony Abovitz, the CEO of Magic Leap, says consumers should avoid HoloLens when it comes out and stick to products made with superior technology. "There are a class of devices (see-through and non-see-through) called stereoscopic 3D. We at Magic Leap believe these inputs into the eye-brain system are incorrect -- and can cause a spectrum of temporary and/or permanent neurologic deficits." - Abovitz" via WinBeta

Intel snaps up Swiss eyewear startup "Just as Google has stepped back from making networked eyewear, Intel is stepping into the gap with the purchase of Swiss startup Composyt Light Labs for an undisclosed amount. ...Most of the near-eye display technologies behind smart glasses involve some sort of trade-off. They either, like Google Glass, only show information in a small area over the eye, or are often too bulky to be practical. Composyt's smart glasses feature a patented see-through display architecture that shows images over a field of vision of 40 degrees on normal eyewear. The startup says the fact that its product works with standard and prescription glasses, has a large image size, and very high transparency will appeal to enterprises, where practicality is more important than designer style." via ZDNet

Displio Is A Tiny E-Ink Display That Runs Programmable Widgets "The Displio is the latest in a line of Internet-connected ‘displays’ designed to sit on a desk, or perhaps on a shop counter, and exhibit various online information, such as Facebook ‘Likes’, weather, number of unread email, and so on. However, although similar to the LaMetric, a fully-programmable but simple, ticker-style Internet-connected display, the Displio is considerably smaller, housing a 2.7 inch e-ink screen. Not only does this change the aesthetics considerably, and allows for a greater amount of information to be displayed, but e-ink’s lower power consumption — requiring power upon refresh only — means the Displio claims to be able to run on a single charge for up to a month." via TechCrunch

'Phorm' Case Adds Morphing Tactile Keyboard to iPad Mini "For the last several years, Tactus Technology has been working on displays that take advantage of microfluidic technology, with buttons that raise up and disappear on demand for a superior touchscreen typing experience. ...Here's how it works: there are a series of small channels filled with fluid behind an elastomeric panel (aka the screen protector portion of the case) and when activated by the slider, pressure is introduced, causing the fluid to come up through the channels and into holes, where it presses against the elastomer, physically changing and morphing the display portion of the case to create buttons. In the opposite slider position, the pressure is released and the buttons disappear as the liquid is dispersed back into the channels. (Video)" via MacRumors

Glyph head-mounted display shoots DLP images directly into your eyeballs "Rather than use an OLED display to provide an image, the Glyph uses a pair of small DLP arrays to bounce light directly onto the wearer’s retinas. This results in a very clear, very bright pixel-free image with an extremely high effective refresh rate. According to founder and chief strategy officer Edward Tang, Avegant started out with the intention of marketing its MEMS-based DLP display technology to the military, before the sudden explosion in the consumer market (driven, as Tang says, in no small part by Oculus) led him to retarget the technology at consumers. This has taken the form of a pair of chunky, oversized headphones, with the DLP components hidden in the connecting band. The idea is that you could wear the final production version of the Glyph (mostly) unobtrusively, and then perhaps flip the band down over your eyes when you’re on the train or something similar and want to watch a movie." via Ars Technica

See how different touchscreens were back in 1982 "While modern touchscreen displays use either a resistive or capacitive display to sense what your finger is touching, touchscreens in 1982 actually used a grid of intersecting infared light beams. When your finger touched the glass of the display, it would interrupt the horizontal and vertical infared light beams, sending a coordinate of where your finger was to the TV. (Video)" via Business Insider

DARPA developing neural display interface connected to your spine "The US military’s advanced research division – DARPA – has revealed details of its ‘cortial modem’ which wants to turn the inside of the human eye into an advanced display powered by the spine. Revealing details of its plans at an event called Biology is Technology (BiT) in the US, the organisation and its director Dr Arati Prabhakar said that their eventual goal is to an internal display system that would look as if you were wearing a Google Glass-style headset, but without any external technology. According to H+, DARPA’s short term goals are to begin by creating a small device that would cost no more than US$10 of showing a basic digital display, similar to a digital clockface, through a direct interface with the visual cortex." via Silicon Republic

Top 5 problems with HMIs (Human Machine Interfaces) "Backlit villains - When choosing a HMI, parameters such as display life, picture quality, and display brightness all need to be factored into the process in correspondence to the application. There's no need to get a super bright and or high quality interface if it's only used rarely or for menial tasks. Brightness often means heat. What you have to remember is that heat seriously affects the life of a backlight and, although some HMI manufacturers try to make bulbs easy to replace, it is more common for the entire unit to be replaced instead. This is obviously more costly and so efforts to reduce overheating and overuse should be made." via Process and Control Today

Sapphire Glass: Engineering vs. Physics "This long intro is a preface to discussion of Apple's recent decision to spend $2 Billion to convert the GTAT facility into a data center. Clearly Apple is giving up on sapphire, otherwise GTAT or some restructured version of it might be useful going forward. This would tend to show that Apple ran into a Physics Problem in converting from glass to sapphire, not: cost or yield issues, design issues, tooling or such. Sapphire actually had to physics issues fundamental to the nature of the material. As described in "Big Surprise," although sapphire was harder and more scratch resistant than glass, with that hardness came brittleness. Secondly, and more importantly, sapphire has a higher index of refraction meaning that screens made with a sapphire overlay would have much higher surface reflections than glass." via Norm Hairston's Flat Panel Display Blog

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Wednesday
Sep032014

Display Technology News Roundup 9.3.2014

Image via Fast Company

Could displays correct your vision? "New technology under development at the University of California-Berkeley and MIT automatically corrects people's vision defects without glasses. Plug a glasses prescription into the new software, and the system calculates how to display the image so it won't look blurry. Basically, by adjusting the light from each pixel on a device and then passing it through a tiny mesh attached to a monitor or phone screen, the system personalizes the image so it's crystal clear." via Fast Company

How will liquid crystal displays help reach exaFLOP speeds? "The Optalysys Optical Solver Supercomputer will initially offer 9 petaflops of compute power, increasing to 17.1 exaflops by 2020. 40 gigaFlops demonstration uses 500x500 pixels working 20 times per second. Each pixel does the work of about 8000 floating point operations in each of the cycles. Speeding up 427 million times to 17.1 exaFLOPS can be done with 500,000 X 500,000 pixels and 8550 cycles per second. They can use multiple LCD displays. ...There was no need to drive the refresh rate up for human displays but there will be a need for optical computing. 4K monitors usually have 8.3 million pixels (3180X2160). Thirty six thousand 4K monitors would get to 500K X 500 K." via Next Big Future

Is quantum dot the next step in LCD TV evolution? "Some brands have adopted quantum dots in their products, such as Amazon’s Kindle Fire HDX tablet PC and Sony’s Triluminos TV in 2013. However, quantum dots must surmount some hurdles to achieve wide usage. The first is the issue of Cadimium, which most quantum dots contain, and which is a regulated substance due to enviromental concerns. The second is the high price of quantum dot materials. Quantum dot makers are working on solving these issues. For example, Nanoco has produced Cadmium-free quantum dot materials, and other makers have secured a temporary exemption for Cadmium in products with quantum dot-based displays imported into Europe. Regarding price, many materials and films makers are entering the market, especially from Korea such as Samsung, LG, Sangbo, LMS, Hanwha and SKC-Haas. Increased competition will likely help to lower prices in the near future." via ECN Mag

Will superconducting quantum dots make LCD displays more vibrant? "Eric Nelson, who is also behind the development of the technology, says that it is called quantum dot enhancement film (QDEF), which enhances the colors of LCD screens. Nelson explains that current technology consumes a lot of energy to display bright colors on the LCD screen. However, QD efficiently provides high-color display and consumes far less energy when compared to other technologies. ..."They sandwiched the QDs between two polymer films, with the QDs embedded in an epoxy glue. Coatings on the film provide further protection and enhance the viewing experience," per ACS." via Tech Times

Who made the world's first touch-sensitive LCD basketball court? "Nike has created this huge touch-sensitive LCD basketball court for a training session with Kobe Bryant. The court has built-in motion sensors that track every player's movements individually. It can also display training exercises for them to follow and show statistics on performance. (Video)" via Gizmodo

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Could this new type of heads-up display redefine the augmented reality experience? "Andrew Maimone’s device is called a Pinlight Display and he has been working on this device in collaboration with three researchers from the University of North Carolina and two from Nvidia Research. The Pinlight Display does not rely on standard optical components. Instead, it utilizes an array of “pinlights”, which are essentially bright dots. Maimone explains that “A transparent display panel is placed between the pinlights and the eye to modulate the light and form the perceived image.” He added that "Since the light rays that hit each display pixel come from the same direction, they appear in focus without the use of lenses." (Video)" via Mobile Commerce Press

Will Quantum Dots Dominate Displays? "The QD Vision approach adds quantum dots to strips of blue LED edge lights around an LCD panel. Some of this light is converted to red and green, which is mixed by a light guide to create a high-quality white backlight for the LCD panel’s color subpixels. The Nanosys/3M approach places the QDEF film over the back of the panel, and then a blue LED backlight is applied (typically through edge lighting and a light guide). Some of the blue light is converted in the film layer to red and green light before reaching a subpixel. A new, third, approach is being developed by a number of researchers. This involves putting the quantum dots directly on the blue LED chip. This can simplify the optical and light-management requirements, but it subjects the quantum-dot material to higher operating temperatures that can decrease performance." via IEEE Spectrum

LEDs Made From ‘Wonder Material’ Perovskite "A hybrid form of perovskite – the same type of material which has recently been found to make highly efficient solar cells that could one day replace silicon – has been used to make low-cost, easily manufactured LEDs, potentially opening up a wide range of commercial applications in future, such as flexible color displays. This particular class of semiconducting perovskites have generated excitement in the solar cell field over the past several years, after Professor Henry Snaith’s group at Oxford University found them to be remarkably efficient at converting light to electricity. In just two short years, perovskite-based solar cells have reached efficiencies of nearly 20%, a level which took conventional silicon-based solar cells 20 years to reach." via redOrbit

Do you have content to share with Display Alliance? Anyone can post press releases, white papers, commentary, videos, and more in the open section.

TouchPico projector creates touchscreens anywhere. "The secret to the touch interaction is in the TouchPico stylus. The built-in infrared camera determines the touchscreen coordinates and relays that information to the projector at up to 40 frames per second. That’s fast enough to play some Fruit Ninja and score. This definitely takes interaction above and beyond the combination of laptop, projector and some gyroscopic mouse. The TouchPico can definitely up your professional game, too" via TechnologyTell

Can new automotive heads-up display be alternative to smartphone while driving? "Navdy wants to change the way we interact with our connected devices while driving altogether. It’s a device that can be mounted on any car’s dashboard and it provides a high-resolution heads-up display that helps you see the road behind it. Simpson says the technology is the same used by pilots when they land an airplane. By seeing what’s behind the display and still receiving information from it, the driver doesn’t take his or her eyes off the road, which should decrease the chances of an accident according to the NHTSA, which released guidelines last year to minimize in-driving distractions such as manual text entry on navigation systems." via TechCrunch

Spheree lets you watch animated images in full 3D "Spheree is the work of a team of researchers working together from the University of São Paulo, Brazil, and the University of British Columbia, Canada, and it's mesmerising to behold. Like its name suggests, it's in the shape of a translucent sphere; inside, the viewer can see animations and images that appear to float in the centre; as the viewer moves around, they can see other sides of the object as their perspective changes. And it's all based on optical illusion. Packed inside the Spheree are multiple mini-projectors, which shine the images onto the interior surface of the sphere. Special software designed by the team blends the projector images together for a single, seamless image." via CNET

5 Things CIOs Should Know About Digital Signage "4. Networks will be put to the test. An increasing percentage of digital signage content will be in ultra-high-definition (UHD), which could swamp an organization’s network bandwidth, particularly if the content is pulled from the cloud instead of being stored and played locally, says IHS analyst Sanju Khatri. Digital signage using UHD displays first appeared at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas in 2013, and IHS predicts huge growth in UHD displays in the next few years." via CIO

Creating Next-Generation Holograms "Researchers from the University of Cambridge have developed a new method for making multi-colored holograms from a thin film of silver nanoparticles, which could greatly increase the storage capabilities of typical optical storage devices. ...Using a single thin layer of silver, Montelongo and his colleagues patterned colorful holograms containing 16 million nanoparticles per square millimeter. Each nanoparticle, approximately 1,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair, scatters light into different colors depending on its particular size and shape. The scattered light from each of the nanoparticles interacts and combines with all of the others to produce an image. The device can display different images when illuminated with a different color light, a property not seen before in a device of this type. Furthermore, when multiple light sources are shone simultaneously, a multi-color image is projected." via Controlled Environments

Are you an engineer or have display expertise? Email jason@displayalliance.com to be featured in the interviews section.

What does automotive HMI technology have in store for the near future? "There is much potential for in-car HMI, but we have yet to see a similar revolution in the UX and UI of the automotive industry. ...However, in the haste to get on-trend, car manufacturers have simply used screens to replicate what has been before, rather than taking an empathetic, intelligent approach. Skeuomorphism abounds, where physical buttons are replaced with look-alikes on a screen — familiarity is retained, but at the expense of tactile feedback. Current touchscreen HMIs are often simply ill-considered re-appropriated solutions developed for completely different contexts (which we will discuss later in the series)." via ITProPortal

Is 4K the next flat panel display revolution, or another gimmick? "While 3D may not have stuck around, now every film is projected in 4K. However, there are circumstances when the benefit of 4K can’t be fully utilized, and it has to do with viewing distance. To perceive the full benefit of a 4K resolution, the human eye needs to be at a certain distance from the screen, depending on the size of the screen. This is also true for 1080p over 720p. "In general, from an integrators perspective, we try to look at what the viewing distance or the vieiwing angle of the folks involved might be," says Mike Hancock, Vice President at MechDyne Corporation. "Flat panels, except for some of the really extreme large-sized ones, really only work good for rooms that are less than 20 feet."" via CorporateTechDecisions

Foldable, Bendable And Bright: The Future Of Displays "Micro transfer printing (µTP) is a method of, essentially, using a type of rubber stamp to pick up very thin strips of semiconductor material (as the “ink”) and place it somewhere else by “stamping” it. The advantage of this technique is that it allows you to put high performance semiconductor elements (such as gallium nitride (GaN)) onto substrates where they wouldn’t normally be compatible (like plastic). And you can place the stamp over and over thereby creating large areas of arbitrary shapes out of otherwise small, high performance components—in ways that are impossible or infeasible with traditional semiconductor manufacturing processes. Prof. John Rogers describes in the Science paper making displays out of micro-LEDs using transfer printing. The micro-LED displays had great battery life, were very bright and, due to the nature of µTP, could be made at low cost. The trifecta of low cost, good battery life and a scalable manufacturing platform while maintaining excellent performance comprises the display industry equivalent of winning eight gold medals in the same Olympic games. It’s a big deal, and Rogers may have delivered it." via Forbes

New automotive head-up display could help drivers avoid collisions in fog "The head-up display (HUD) is the work of Professor Vassilis Charissis and his team, based in the Virtual Reality and Simulation Laboratory (VRS Lab) within the School of Engineering and Built Environment. The display has been developed and evaluated in a 3D driving simulator, which allows drivers to navigate a perfectly recreated stretch of the M8, M74 and M80 in a choice of conditions. One of the options lets the driver tackle the motorways in dense fog, before giving them the chance to drive the same stretch again using the head-up display. When initiated, the windscreen of the car highlights where other vehicles are on the motorway within a 400-metre range and even lets the driver know when it’s safe to change lanes." via FleetNews

A Vision of Future Displays "According to Brown Elliott, Samsung has not used even half the IP they have developed and will need some time to roll out what is already possible for the next few years. But Samsung’s loss could be someone’s gain. As I said in the beginning, Brown Elliott has a vision of the display industry in 10-15 years. The way she sees it, light field displays and light field imaging devices will merge in this time period. That means a clear sheet of glass (or plastic) will be both camera and display. With a light field display, a lens is placed above a number of pixels that can provide “views” from many directions. Current light field displays and imagers are always pixel limited so the resulting images are typically 50-200x lower resolution than the underlying display resolution." via Display Central

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Sunday
Feb092014

Display Technology News Roundup 2.9.2014

Image via Macworld

Why doesn't Apple does make a touchscreen MacBook? "The appointment of Craig Federighi as the leader of all of Apple’s software efforts could have been seen as a sign of that merger, but Federighi himself is adamant that the Mac will always be true to itself. “The reason OS X has a different interface than iOS isn’t because one came after the other or because this one’s old and this one’s new,” Federighi said. Instead, it’s because using a mouse and keyboard just isn’t the same as tapping with your finger. “This device,” Federighi said, pointing at a MacBook Air screen, “has been honed over 30 years to be optimal” for keyboards and mice. Schiller and Federighi both made clear that Apple believes that competitors who try to attach a touchscreen to a PC or a clamshell keyboard onto a tablet are barking up the wrong tree. “It’s obvious and easy enough to slap a touchscreen on a piece of hardware, but is that a good experience?” Federighi said. “We believe, no.”" via Macworld

Will Your Next TV Be An LCD? Not If This Startup Has Its Way "Kateeva, which has 68 employees on board after acquiring OLED Plus in Korea today, has some intriguing technology that could change the game — and level the playing field at the same time. ...To date, all the OLEDs you’ve seen — whether on your Samsung phone, or one of the high-priced TVs — have been made using an expensive, wasteful, sloppy process. The OLED material is vaporized and then winds up on the screen once it re-forms into a solid. Merck, which supplies the chemicals that form the OLED material, believes this method has a dim future: “OLED production based on chemical vapor deposition can hardly be cost competitive to LCD,” it said in a recent presentation on the topic." via Forbes

Why Are Automotive LCD Instrument Panels On the Rise? "With drivers becoming increasingly inundated by technology in the dashboard, the focus for automotive designers and engineers has primarily been on the "center stack" of the interior, where primary screens and controls typically reside. But as LCDs are added to—and even take over—the instrument panel (IP) and displace analog gauges, some of the coolest innovations are happening right under drivers' noses — and appearing in lower-priced cars. ...The reason for this IP innovation is that drivers are being asked to process more information while behind the wheel, and automakers and their suppliers are tasked with presenting it in a way that doesn't divert attention away from the road." via PC Mag

Will New OTFTs Revolutionize Flexible Display Technology? "Adding to the growing list of companies or research firms that are exploring the technology, the UK-based Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) recently showed off its new backplane fabrication process that will allow organic thin film transistors (OTFT) arrays to be bent up to a radius of 1mm without showing any significant reduction in performance. As the technology advances, the OTFT arrays could potentially be integrated into foldable, ultra-flexible AMOLED backplanes. This in turn could open the door to all sorts of new types of flexible and foldable devices." via Android Authority

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Are AMOLED displays at risk of burn-in? "The problem is the “O” in the AMOLED acronym, which stands for “organic”. The organic compounds used in AMOLED displays are polymers or copolymers, such as polyfluorene (PFO) and polyphenylene vinylene (PPV), both of which degrade with use. This is partly due to the fact that the chemistry involved in creating the electroluminescence is irreversible, so the luminous pixels degrade as they’re used up, like a battery. These organic materials tend to crystallise, too – an effect that is exacerbated at higher temperatures. That’s something to bear in mind the next time your phone becomes warm while you’re playing a game or watching a video." via PC Pro

Will Chinese display panel manaufacturers pose a threat to Taiwan manufacturers? "Taiwanese flat-panel makers could see their position in China threatened by local rivals by 2016, when Chinese firms are expected to begin mass producing next-generation products, a local market researcher predicted on Wednesday. Mass production of panels started at two advanced Chinese plants in the third quarter of 2011, and four others are expected to catch up by 2016, moving China forward in the panel industry, according to Delux Chen, a flat-panel industry analyst at the Photonics Industry and Technology Development Association (PIDA)." via Want China Times

Taiwan's TAITRA looking for next big thing in display panel sector "Most notably, TAITRA Chairman Wang Chih-kang [in January] urged Taiwan's display panel makers to ramp up efforts toward innovating new products and developing new technologies amid heightened competition from mainland China. China last year imported about US$4.5 billion worth of display panels from Taiwan, said Wang. With production capacity growing rapidly across the strait, and increased efforts from South Korean competitors in the China market, the industry may not be able to expect procurement to continue at volumes seen in previous years, Wang said. “While Taiwan still retains a lead in display technologies, innovation remains the only path for the sector's survival,” said Wang, while also urging structural reform across industries and further deregulation of Taiwan's market." via The China Post

F-35 Test Pilots Will Begin Flying “Gen” Helmet Display "Getting the HMDS right is a serious issue because the F-35, the DOD’s costliest weapons program, was designed without a pilot’s heads-up display, a feature that is common to fourth-generation fighters. In September 2011, F-35 prime contractor Lockheed Martin (Stand CS02) awarded a contract to BAE Systems (Stand U67) to develop an alternate HMDS with detachable night-vision goggles (NVGs) as a fallback system in the event VSI failed to resolve issues with the chosen helmet-mounted display." via AIN Online

Can New HMI alternatives improve operations and cut costs? "The fewer moving parts of multitouch tablets make them a better choice for workers who visit dusty, wet, and corrosive environments. Industrial tablets have the durability required for these areas, and many can be operated while wearing gloves. Furthermore, they can improve worker safety through the creation of commands that cannot be performed unless both hands are on the screen. Although it is unlikely that businesses are going to swap their functioning screens for new multitouch ones, it is highly probable they will replace worn-out screens with multitouch capability as the price for these devices drops. Multitouch functionality is also expected to become more ubiquitous due to the integrated support for the technology in new Windows operating systems. Eventually, all screens will likely have multitouch capability, so it is smart to select an HMI package that supports it." via InTech

Will OLET Slowly Encroach OLED Market? "The South Korean display industry has come out on top in LCD and OLED, becoming the envy of the world. Yet, Professor Lee Sin-doo is already making preparations for the future, refusing to sit on his laurels. What he is currently keen on is an organic light-emitting transistor (OLET). In contract to OLED that has two electrodes (the cathode and anode), OLET, a new light-emission concept, comes with three electrodes, giving it a competitive edge over OLED. OLET uses network electrodes, so it can emit light in the same structure without being affected by the type of substrates. The centerpiece of OLET lies with addressing OLED’s shortcomings. The supply of light though vertical-type organic transistors can solve OLED’s problems, so OLET will soon take over from OLED." via Korea IT Times

Will Wearable Tech Change the Smartphone as You Know It? "CA Technologies CTO John Michelsen thinks that if wearable technology does replace the smartphone, next-generation display technology will need to play a key role. "It depends on the visual technology. It's the display," Michelsen says. "What am I going to do when someone emails me an Excel file and I need to do a quick review and respond? The smartphone is barely viable as it is. If we can get display tech that lets me hit a button for a display, I think the cell phone goes away."" via CIO

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How the Avegant Glyph's virtual retinal display mesmerizes "Unlike most headset displays that are built around a small digital screen, the Glyph creates an image by reflecting a low-powered color LED onto an array of two million tiny mirrors. The micromirrors shape the light into a two-dimensional image, which is then beamed straight onto the wearer's retina – hence why they're referring to it as a "virtual retinal display." Since you aren't looking directly at the light source, the image comes off as more true-to-life and, according to the designers, reduces eye fatigue." via Gizmag

How display technology based on EYEBALLS makes devices more readable "Phones typically have a light sensor which ramps the backlight up and down based on the ambient light conditions. This is a limited solution, however, as daylight can be fifty times brighter than indoor lighting. The human eye copes with this well; transmissive technologies like LCD and OLED can't. Apical's technology counters this by modifying the image, pixel by pixel, based on the ambient light, the direction of the light and the estimated viewing angle. By increasing the contrast with this "assertive" display they can keep the image on your device readable as you move from indoors to outdoors." via The Register

Japan Display announces mass production of Memory-In-Pixel reflective-type LCD module "Since the MIP structure can keep screen images in the static random access memory transistor fabricated in each sub-pixel, in the case of still images, once data is written it is kept, and ultra-low power consumption is achieved. The new scattering layer optimizes the panel’s optical design, and enables a near paper-like display. Since the display consumes very little electricity it is suitable for ultra-low power applications, like wearable devices, which are not recharged for long periods of time. " via Fareastgizmos

How a new transparent display system could provide heads-up data "Many current “heads-up” display systems use a mirror or beam-splitter to project an image directly into the user’s eyes, making it appear that the display is hovering in space somewhere in front of him. But such systems are extremely limited in their angle of view: The eyes must be in exactly the right position in order to see the image at all. ...The secret to the new system [from MIT researchers]: Nanoparticles are embedded in the transparent material. These tiny particles can be tuned to scatter only certain wavelengths, or colors, or light, while letting all the rest pass right through. That means the glass remains transparent enough to see colors and shapes clearly through it, while a single-color display is clearly visible on the glass." via MIT

How to make your gloves touchscreen capable "Our favorite method, however, is also the easiest, as it involves using a product made specifically for this job, Any Glove. A liquid material that you squeeze out onto your glove and let dry, Any Glove works on most materials, including fleece, knits, and synthetic suede. A separate solution is available for leather. And it doesn’t wash off when you wash your gloves. Any Glove has also earned approval for use on combat gloves by the U.S. Armed Services, so, you know, it’s got that going for it." via TechHive

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How an HMI Can Make a Good Machine Better "The company wanted to upgrade its product line of smart roasters with a new human machine interface (HMI) that would take operator productivity, connectivity and efficiency to the next level of operational excellence. “The touch panel interface is the key point of contact for the roaster operator,” said Ludwig, and improving the interaction and control of roasters by adding advanced functionality and remote monitoring capabilities would help customers meet key performance indicator (KPI) metrics and goals." via AutomationWorld

How this 3D holographic display makes Star Wars a reality "The technology behind the Voxiebox is much simpler than it would seem. The device contains a projector that beams an image up onto a screen, which in turn vibrates up and down at a rapid speed. The rapid vibration allows the image to appear as though it’s a 3D asset. If that’s tough to picture, think of it as similar to those light trail pictures that frequently pop up on social networks. You can circle around the Voxiebox and the image quality never wavers or fades out of view. The only way the image will disappear is if you look at the display’s base head-on; you’re supposed to look at it from an overhead angle similar to the camera orientation in games like Diablo." via ExtremeTech

What are the technical merits of the pixel density race? "If there is any single number that people point to for resolution, it is the 1 arcminute value that Apple uses to indicate a “Retina Display”. This number corresponds to around 300 PPI for a display that is at 10-12 inches from the eye. In other words, this is about 60 pixels per degree (PPD). Pixels per degree is a way accounting for both distance from the display and the resolution of the display, which means that all the information here is not limited to smartphone displays, and applies universally to any type of display. While this is a generally reasonable value to work with, the complexity of the human eye and the brain in regards to image perception makes such a number rather nebulous." via AnandTech

Can Malware Log Touchscreen Swipes To Record Your PIN? "Recording touch screen coordinates “has a certain value in itself,” Hindocha says. “If you’re monitoring all touch events and the phone hasn’t been touched for at least one hour, then you get a minimum of four touch events, you can assume that is a PIN code being entered.” “The more interesting thing is, if you get a screenshot and then overlay the touch events, you’re looking at a screenshot of what the user is seeing, combined with dots, sequentially, where the user is touching the screen.”" via Forbes

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Tuesday
Nov262013

Display Technology News Roundup 11.26.2013

Image via ExtremeTech

IGZO display tech finally makes it to mass market "Low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (LTPS) is another alternative to a-Si that has higher electron mobility and thus excellent image quality, but LTPS is difficult and expensive to manufacture. One of the best examples of LTPS is the new Kindle Fire HDX, which is probably the only device on the market that has a better display than the iPad Air. According to Raymond Soneira at DisplayMate, the iPad Air’s use of IGZO reduces the display’s power consumption by 57% over last year’s iPad 4 — a huge reduction for a single generation." via ExtremeTech

How to build a "stealth" computer display "Brusspup specializes in optical illusion. He noticed that if you completely remove polarizer P1, an LCD display shows essentially uniform illumination with a varying pattern of polarization over the screen. However, as the human eye is not very sensitive to the polarization of light with which it sees the world, an LCD display from which the final polarizing film has been removed appears to be bright and featureless." via Gizmag

Are PC Displays Still Needed? "From the success of crowdfunding for cheap displays, there is clearly a need on the market for low-cost digital screens. The fact that prices for this equipment continue to drop will provide a stimulus to new and innovative uses for displays by businesses, especially by small and midsize companies where budgets are tight. Displays may eventually become a cost-saving commerce solution for advertising and marketing departments." via Midsize Insider

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

How MIT Invented A Screen That Lets You Reach Through And Touch Things "They call it inFORM. Unveiled this week, the device employs 900 plastic pegs on a square grid that can be raised or lowered to form shapes. A depth camera tracks the shape and movement of the input (your hand, your dog... whatever) and displays it with the pegs." via International Science Times

Why Smartphone Makers Are Racing to Build Flexible Screens "Just as liquid-crystal displays supplanted cathode ray tubes years ago in televisions, Korean display makers are now concentrating their efforts in organic light-emitting diode screens, which offer more vivid colors and can be made even thinner than liquid-crystal displays, since they don't require a backlight. Display makers in Japan and Taiwan have also been experimenting with different types of flexible screens though they haven't been able to reach mass production." via The Wall Street Journal

What is the future of displays? Qualcomm's Toq Smartwatch Displays "The Toq uses MEMS to produce the IMOD effect. Interferometric Modulation creates colors in a different way than LCDS or OLEDS. Essentially, the MEMS that comprise the display have two elements: coated glass on top and reflective membranes on bottom. An air pocket between the two layers is what creates colors depending on what type of electrical charge is applied to the pixel." via ReadWrite

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New liquid crystal structure reported by Kent State researchers "A research group at Kent State University has described and documented the structure of a new type of liquid crystal that had been predicted theoretically, but never seen. The new "twist-bend nematic" liquid crystal, one with a spiral twist, was observed by a Kent State research group led by Oleg D. Lavrentovich, Ph.D., D.Sc., trustees research professor of chemical physics and former director of the Liquid Crystal Institute at Kent State. The new type of liquid crystal, akin to a new species in biology, might enable new technologies, ranging from faster-switching display devices to biological sensors, Lavrentovich said." via Record-Courier

Is Ink-Jet Printing the Key to Next-Generation OLED Displays? "Kateeva’s setup—available as of today to display makers—features a movable platform that precisely positions glass panels or plastic sheets large enough for six 55-inch displays beneath custom print heads. Each head contains hundreds of nozzles tuned to deposit picoliter-scale droplets in exact locations to build up the pixels of a display. The company says the tool can be incorporated fairly easily into existing display production lines. Kateeva cofounder and president Conor Madigan says the system, based on the same technology in consumer ink-jet printers, eliminates the need for a step in the conventional manufacturing scheme that increases the risk of defects in the displays." via MIT Technology Review

New chip can detect gestures in front of tiny wearable displays "A fledgling company, Chirp Microsystems is developing a gesture-based operating system to work with a new chip that uses sound, rather than vision, to track the user’s movements. ...Inspired by medical technology, the system uses ultrasound, rather than light, to detect hand gestures within a range of about a meter. The system can sense gestures that don’t occur directly in front of its display, and it uses far less battery power than existing gesture camera-based interfaces: It runs up to 30 hours continuously on a tiny battery." via Singularity Hub

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Touchscreen display coating market to see major shift in technology "Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) now has a 95 percent market share for touch-screen transparent conductive coatings. At the same time, shipments of non-ITO films are forecast by IHS to increase 320 percent this year. By the end of 2017, shipments of alternative technologies--such as silver nanowire, copper mesh, silver mesh, silver halide and silver nano particle--will account for 34 percent of the market, reducing ITO's share to 66 percent." via FierceMobileIT

Could Biological Semiconductors Transform Tech Industry? "The semiconductors are known as quantum dots and are made from naturally occurring organic compounds called peptides, short chains of amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. ...In a demonstration, Mr. Rosenman shone a blue light (the backlight in an LCD TV is blue) onto tubes containing different solutions of quantum dots. The tubes lit up in red, green and blue—the constituents of any display. “There is a cost saving of about 10 times compared to other displays,” said Mr. Myersdorf. “The manufacturing process is the same as for making OLEDs.” An OLED is an organic light-emitting diode, commonly found in some smartphones and TVs." via The Wall Street Journal

New Twists On Autofocus, Multitouch, And Energy Harvesting "Qeexo has not built a new MEMS device; rather, it’s using information from the accelerometers already built into smartphones and tablets in a new way. ...Qeexo’s software analyzes the vibration generated when you touch the screen and determines whether you’re using your fingertip, knuckle, fingernail, or a stylus. Apps can then use that information to allow different types of touches to perform different function—a knuckle swipe, for example, could highlight text instead of scroll down the page; a fingernail could bring up a menu. It seems simple, but it’s not so easy to implement: Schwarz said she’s met with manufacturers who aren’t interested at first, then come back and tell her that they tried and failed to replicate the technology and are now ready to talk." via IEEE Spectrum

How To Add a Touch Interface to your Hardware with Touch Board "Want to create an interactive design with touch interface? Well, the Touch Board may be just what you are looking for. Arduino compatible, the Touch Board comes with 12 capacitive touch channels and will respond to anything conductive that is connected to one of the channels. You can turn on a light, ring a doorbell, or even play midi music, all from your very own Touch Board." via Engineering.com

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Sunday
Oct272013

Display Technology News Roundup 10.27.2013

Image via Alenia Aeronautica Press Office / The Aviationist

F-35 Program Stops Alternate Helmet Display Development "In a review of the F-35’s flight-test progress in 2011, the Department of Defense identified the HMDS as one of several program risks. It found that the helmet system was deficient in the areas of night-vision acuity, display jitter during aircraft buffeting and image latency from the F-35’s electro-optical distributed aperture system, which combined detracted from mission tasks and the use of the display as a primary flight reference. The Gen 3 helmet “will include an improved night vision camera, new liquid crystal displays, automated alignment and software improvements,” according to the JPO" via AIN Online

Samsung Display begins LCD production in China "Samsung Display, a unit of Samsung Electronics Co, and domestic competitor LG Display are both building multi-billion dollar flat-screen plants in China, to help them compete more effectively against little-known Chinese rivals. Chinese companies such as BOE Technology Group and TCL Corp's LCD unit CSOT are undercutting the world's two biggest LCD makers and winning market share with robust sales to local TV manufacturers." via Reuters

Apple's War on Pixels "Commodification is an inherently boring process, particularly when it comes to technology: over time, products that were once unique and expensive become less so. That process has pushed HDTVs, wireless routers, and Bluetooth speakers into living rooms en masse as the technologies behind them have become more and more generic. One technology most visibly marked by commodification is displays—in particular, high-resolution displays so packed with pixels that human eyeballs cannot perceive the individual dots that make up the image" via The New Yorker

The new manufacturing tech that will bring high-resolution displays to every device "Applied Materials’ three new manufacturing machines should help cut costs by improving quality control and flexibility at multiple points in the production process. The new AKT 55KS PECVD is a Plasma Enhanced Physical Vapor Deposition system that’s designed to better control the amount of hydrogen gas inside the manufacturing chamber, allow for a more uniform distribution of deposited material, and eliminate defects. The other two machines — the AKT PiVot 25K DT and PiVot 55K DT are essentially the same system, but built at two different sizes." via ExtremeTech

Augmented reality system makes cars see-through "Michel Ferreira and his colleagues at the University of Porto in Portugal developed the See-Through System, which uses a lightweight heads-up display to look "through" a truck up ahead. The system works by looking through a camera that records the trailing driver's perspective. Software recognises the back of the lead vehicle, and replaces it with a video feed from a webcam mounted on that lead vehicle." via New Scientist

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Mitsubishi Shuts Down Consumer Video Division "Mitsubishi was always a big player in the RPTV category...,and near the end of its run it created some truly gargantuan rear-projection displays. But the market moved on, wanting flat panels instead of floor standers, and unfortunately Mitsubishi couldn’t refocus fast enough to keep its head above water. So if you liked Mitsubishi’s gear, I’d watch big resellers and liquidators for some serious discounts between now and the holiday buying season." via Technology Tell

Technology to Humanize the Brand "In today’s virtual mannequins, high-resolution optics project a video onto a screen, usually made of cut glass or acrylic shaped in the silhouette of the mannequin speaker and coated with a semi-transparent film. Viewed from the side, the mannequin is only about one cm thick; viewed from the front, the cut-out resembles a person. Improvements on current technology are bringing these mannequins to life. Light efficient projection technology is increasing brightness from today’s average 3000 to 4500 lumens to well beyond 6000 lumens so that the image is crisp and distinctive, even in a brightly lit room." via Wired

Disney tech lets users feel 3D objects on flat screens "Ordinarily, when we feel a bump as we're sliding our finger across a smooth surface, we do so because the increase in friction created by the bump causes the skin in our fingertip to stretch ever so slightly. In order to simulate that friction, the Disney team uses a conductive display in which the electrostatic forces between the finger and the glass can be modulated by applying more or less voltage to the screen." via Gizmag

Semiconductor Will Help Develop Hi-Def Flat Panels "Researchers at the National Institute for Materials Science have developed a pixel switching semiconductor, which will be the key to driving next-generation displays by using an oxide film with a new elemental composition. ...The research results are expected to be effective not only for reducing the power consumption of displays which consume about half of the power in rapidly diffusing smartphones, but also for achieving higher frequencies to realize higher-definition TVs." via Controlled Environments

Does test equipment really need knobs and displays? "Put your tablet wherever you wish. Or remote the display to your laptop that is supporting some humungous monitor. Why settle for the fixed sizes of displays offered by vendors when you can buy high resolution displays at your local electronic retailer larger than your entire lab bench if you wished?Will engineers accept the remote display concept?" via EDN

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A True Revolution in Display and Touch-screen Manufacturing Begins "Cambrios (Sunnyvale, California) announced the formation of TPK Film Solutions, Ltd. (TPKF), a joint venture with TPK, the world’s largest touch solution provider, and NISSHA, a leader in film-based touch sensors. TPKF’s mission is to “produce ClearOhm silver nanowire-based film in a roll-to-roll process allowing original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to bring to market cutting-edge touchscreens for new products and applications worldwide,” Cambrios announced in its press release. ...All of this may not sound too exciting until you understand not only that transparent conductors are essential components of most displays and touch screens, but also that ITO has significant limitations." via HDTV Magazine

Nvidia Ends Screen Tearing With G-Sync Display Technology "Conventional LCD monitors have fixed refresh rates, typically 60hz, which the GPU must work with, but with G-Sync, a module goes inside the monitor that transfers control of the refresh rate to the GPU. Because the display adapter controls the timing, the two are always synchronized, eliminating screen tearing without sacrificing performance." via The Escapist

Honeywell Nearing Launch Of Touchscreen-Enabled Avionics "Along with qualitative assessments of the pilots’ workload, researchers used electromyogram measurements of muscle activity to gauge the pros and cons of mounting locations and touch technologies. The researchers confirmed that the best fit for touchscreen displays on large flight decks for high-end business jets or air transport aircraft is on the center console, or pedestal. “From a pilot workload perspective, if you put touch there, that’s the best place for it. In a smaller flight deck, pilots are used to looking at bezel buttons and knobs on the forward displays, so touch makes more sense there.”" via Aviation Week

Robotic testing finds touchscreen inaccuracies at edge of iPhone display "Using a robotic finger and a specialized suite of test software, Finnish automated testing company OptoFidelity found that Apple's latest handsets accurately detect touch inputs only across a small swath of their displays, roughly equating to the location of the on-screen keyboard. The iPhone 5s and 5c, according to the company, suffer from "extremely bad" touch performance near the edges of the display." via Apple Insider

New multi-touch sensor is customizable with scissors "Together with researchers from the MIT Media Lab, they developed a printable multi-touch sensor whose shape and size everybody can alter. A new circuit layout makes it robust against cuts, damage, and removed areas. The researchers have presented their work at the conference “User Interface and Technology” (UIST) in St. Andrews, Scotland. The sensor remains functional even when cut to a different shape." via R&D Mag

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Tourist site desperate to stop graffiti adds vandal-friendly touchscreens "Officials in Wuhan's Yellow Crane Tower Park are determined to stop name-etching vandals once and for all, and have rolled out a series of graffiti-welcoming touchscreen displays. Now well-behaved and asshole tourists alike can enjoy the thrill of leaving their marks on priceless antiquities." via Shanghaiist

Existing Inside the Screens "In his TED Talk, Reach into the computer and grab a pixel, Dr. Lee shows some current projects and discusses future possibilities. The talk begins with discussing the boundaries between the user and the screen, and throughout the talk the boundary gets smaller until it no longer exists." via Engineering.com

Wheel-Shaped Molecules Better For Displays "Whereas the usual rod-shaped LEDs can trap up to 80 percent of light generated because light flows from them in only one direction -- known as polarization -- Lupton and his team made a molecule that is "perfectly symmetrical, and that makes the light it generates perfectly random,” he said in a university news release, noting the new organic molecule is known as OLED." via International Business Times

Worlds Largest e-Paper Sign Displayed at UN Headquarters "e-Ink has set a worlds record for the latest e-Paper sign that is installed at the UN Headquarters in New York. The eWall is an intricate combination of architectural, display and network engineering. It stands about 6 meters wide with 231 tiled 7.4″ displays arranged in a grid of 33 displays across by 7 displays high. With an overall resolution of 26,400 x 3,360 pixels, it is perfect to read at long and short distances." via Good Reader

Aerial Imaging Plate turns holograms into touchscreens "Much like a low-quality monitor with a very narrow viewing angle, the AIP’s holographic effect can only be viewed from a very specific location in relation to the projected image. To onlookers, it appears as a regular flat surface, but to a person standing in the sweet spot, the image looks as though it’s floating in the air. In what may seem like a classic case of “it’s a feature not a bug,” Asukanet feels the specific viewing angle requirement is appealing, perhaps as a privacy feature, even though onlookers can see what’s happening on the flat display." via ExtremeTech

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Sunday
Aug252013

Display Technology News Roundup 8.25.2013

Image via TechSpot

NFC technology can be used to wirelessly power an E-ink display "NFC uses inductive coupling to provide power to passive tags and the E-ink display uses this to its advantage with the help of a wireless power harvester microchip and a 1mAh battery. Don’t expect massive power without wires just yet but it’s enough to power the 2.7-inch display with enough stored energy to cycle through images when not paired with the phone." via TechSpot

The PC monitor is dead. Meet the new smart monitor. "Bob Wudeck, associate vice president of strategy and business development at BenQ, says that the company has been forced to rethink the concept of a monitor, whether it be gaming monitors optimized for StarCraft or adding intelligence to the traditional display. 'The traditional model is a display that a desktop or notebook can plug into,' Wudeck says. 'We don’t think that’s going to be the case. We think that in the future, you’ll have more media content on your phone, and you’ll share more of that from your phone, than from a desktop computer,' Wudeck adds. 'And that’s something that we can develop a product around.'" via PCWorld

LG makes world’s thinnest, highest pixel density smartphone LCD ever "Displays continue to improve, though, as LG has proven with the production of a 5.5-inch 2560×1440 LCD with 538 pixels-per-inch. The LCD is the first mobile display to reach that resolution, and is also the thinnest, measuring in at a mere 1.21mm." via ExtremeTech

Breaking Google Glass Into Pieces: The Costs of Production and Likely Retail Price "'The Himax FSC LCOS [Field Sequential Color, Liquid Crystal on Silicon] requires both a display device and normally a 1-chip ASIC controller.... Figure the controller costs about $2 to $3, but this would go to near zero if the functionality was integrated into other chips in the system,' Karl Guttag tells Minyanville. 'The LEDs for illumination are about $2, and then the films for homogenizing/spreading the LED light and polarizing with packaging are another $2 to $3. I would guess the optics, including the beam splitter in front of the eye, are on the order of $5. When you total up the display plus controller, illumination LEDs and films, and the optics, the total cost is probably about $25, plus or minus $5.'" via Nasdaq

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Next-Generation Displays: The Reality of Manufacturing Sets In "Amorphous silicon, with an electron mobility of about 1 cm2/Vs, served LCDs well for years but isn’t suitable for the new displays. Laser annealing of amorphous silicon to turn it into a polycrystalline form, typically in the range of 50 to 150 cm2/Vs, has been the mainstay for high-resolution mobile display manufacture. This process adds costs, however, and does not scale up well." via IEEE Spectrum

Shell 3-D Visualization Lab Offers Detailed Views on Energy-Related Research "For academics, students, engineers, oil and gas drillers, geologists and other scientists, the new Shell 3-D Visualization Lab in the University of Wyoming’s Energy Innovation Center (EIC) has the ability to image detailed 3-D models of land surfaces, the subsurface, molecules and more -- a view that allows these entities to share the same frame of reference. ...The visualization center also includes an IQ-Station, which is essentially a portable, immersive environment that contains a desk with a computer and three moveable display panels. Researchers can sit at the station and don 3-D glasses to review models on a smaller scale. The visualization center also contains a six-panel, two-dimensional video wall that can be used to view any images at high resolution, including 3-D images generated in the CAVE. Both can be used for many interdisciplinary projects, Shader says." via University of Wyoming

A Printing Process to Make Wall-Sized Displays "Adapting conventional printing technology, researchers have developed a way to rapidly and inexpensively make uniform arrays of high-performing transistors out of carbon nanotubes on flexible plastic sheets. The process could eventually lead to a tool for manufacturing large-area, low-power sensor arrays and displays." via MIT Technology Review

The Quest to Touch Virtual Objects "Brownlow says, 'Proximity interfaces are being developed where, as you bring your fingers towards the screen, the screen has a predictive ability of what you are about to do and you can then interface with the screen without actually touching it.' As 3D evolves there will come a point where the user will want to interact haptically with these images. " via Gizmodo

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Gulfstream’s Enhanced Vision System (EVS) II and Head-Up Display (HUD) II for the G280 certified by FAA "EVS II captures actual, real-time images of an aircraft’s surroundings using an infrared camera mounted in the nose. The HUD II uses a LCD to project images onto a transparent combiner in the pilot’s forward field of view, and integrates the images with flight guidance information." via Aviation Today

Kickstarter campaign for LED display "Two years in the making, LEDgoes is much like the kind of scrolling screens seen at convenience stores displaying the worth of this week's Lotto, or those seen in front of stock exchanges displaying real-time quotes. However, LEDgoes’ modular design allows the user to make the display practically any length from just one, 5x7 LED matrix panel wide, all the way up to sixty-four panels in total. An even longer length could be attained through software control. ...The Kickstarter officially ends on Sep. 9th at 11:40 PM CDT." via PRWeb

Shifting Apple product specifications to heap pressure on manufacturers "Reports indicate that Apple is set to adopt Japan-made In-Cell, and indium tin oxide (ITO) coated display panels for the company's upcoming products to be released this fall. With Apple's current products nearing the end of their life cycles, including market mainstays such as the iPhone 4, iPhone 4s, and the 9.7-inch early generation iPads, Taiwan-based panel suppliers are poised to be affected by the switch." via The China Post

The future of touchscreens revealed: bigger, cheaper, bendier "But there is a cheaper and less environmentally harmful alternative [than ITO], developed by MIT biochemist Dr Angela Belcher and inspired by the multi-layered formation of abalone shells. It uses silver nanowires scattered over a sheet of plastic. Take two layers of plastic coated with very long, very thin silver strands (or even one sheet coated on both sides) and you have a capacitive touch sensor that's thinner, lighter, more flexible and much easier to manufacture than the ITO sensors." via TechRadar

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Electronic Skin Lights Up When Touched "A team of researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, has developed the first user-interactive “electronic skin” that responds to pressure by instantly emitting light. ...Javey, who has been working on developing the e-skin for the past five years, has high hopes for his new material. He’d like to create user-interactive wallpaper or a dashboard that responds to cues such as the driver’s eye or body movements." via IEEE Spectrum

Can touchscreens save you from carpal tunnel? They might actually be worse "Cynthia Burt, Injury Prevention Division Manager at the UCLA Office of Environment, Health and Safety, believes that the inherent nature of laptops make them less than ergonomically sound due to the relatively fixed screen and keyboard positions. This is amplified with a touchscreen laptop because, as she explains, there is a difference between optimal visual difference and optimal reach distance. 'We recommend that people have an 18- to 20-inch envelope in front of them for optimal reaching,' Burt told us." via Digital Trends

What Makes a Good Gesture Control "Phones rely on prompts that are supposed to teach you gestures step by step. But the issue is that human beings have only a limited capacity, depending on their needs, for this sort of tutoring. If we don’t learn the gesture quickly, we’ll quickly shut off the annoying prompts and fail to learn the gesture, says Yaro Brock, co-founder of Cookie Jar UX and a longtime user-experience researcher." via Bloomberg Businessweek

How An Amputee Built The World’s First Functional Prosthetic Finger for Touchscreens "One of MacDuff’s most critical design considerations hardly existed 10 years ago and is now somewhat of a holy grail in prosthetics: making the finger touch-screen-friendly. This had become, after all, one of the most important everyday functions of our fingers. RCM has such a next-generation upgrade to the BPF in development. Bengtsson tells Co.Design they’ve "already identified and tested the material" that can successfully mimic human skin and heat conductance. " via Fast Company

The economics of LCD demand "Reading the news, I get the sense LCDs are knocking on everyone’s door, as panel makers seek to enter every conceivable market. The IHS report notes how price competition in conventional audio systems for checking who’s outside your door leads to interest in new value propositions, such as video and audio surveillance, but that implies highly elastic demand relative to price. A rising demand for door-mounted LCDs requires falling prices." via Display Central

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Sunday
Aug112013

Display Technology News Roundup 8.11.2013

Image via Christian Holz / Fiberio

Touch Screen IDs Users via Fingerprints "Entering usernames, passwords, and pins is generally seen as sufficient security for desktops and mobile devices, but things become much more complicated when computers are used by multiple users, especially simultaneously. “Keeping track of who is doing what is a key element for collaborative interactive systems,” says Holz. “We have now created a touch screen that accomplishes this unobtrusively for every touch users make. Incorporating the ability to do this securely and seamlessly opens up a wide range of new applications.”" via MIT Technology Review

Amazon is working on displays that Apple and Samsung can’t match "And with his acquisition of the Washington Post, Bezos has a new incentive to breach new heights in displays—something as light as paper but infinitely more versatile. Bezos has said before that he thinks print is going away but journalism is forever, so it’s hard to imagine that he acquired a print newspaper with the idea that it would continue to be delivered in that medium. Other companies are also trying to turn electrowetting display technology into a viable business, so it seems that, like the development of the LCD display, which began in the US but was not perfected until the technology was acquired by Korean companies like Samsung and LG, this is the sort of technology that could take a long time to develop and will eventually give rise to an ecosystem of competing manufacturers." via Quartz

Mitsubishi expands Industrial TFT sales efforts "This announcement follows the acquisition by Kyocera Corporation of Optrex Corporation, one of Mitsubishi Electric’s sales channels for industrial TFT displays. Effective immediately, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation will replace Optrex’ sales structure in Europe with its own Mitsubishi Electric Europe sales and customer support network." via Evertiq

Low Power with High Contrast LCD Displays "If your next portable battery project involves the need for a high contrast low-power (microwatt range) LCD display and you need it now, read on. Occasionally an existing technology is improved to push components into new usage areas. Sharp has done that with the monochrome LCD display, pushing it into microwatt power consumption territory while approaching e-ink display contrast levels. Coupled with pixel memory, they are call memory LCDs." via ENGINEERING.com

A telescope for the eye: New contacts may improve sight "The new lens system developed by Ford's team uses tightly fitting mirror surfaces to make a telescope that has been integrated into a contact lens just over a millimeter thick. The lens has a dual modality: the center of the lens provides unmagnified vision, while the ring-shaped telescope located at the periphery of the regular contact lens magnifies the view 2.8 times. To switch back and forth between the magnified view and normal vision, users would wear a pair of liquid crystal glasses originally made for viewing 3-D televisions. These glasses selectively block either the magnifying portion of the contact lens or its unmagnified center. The liquid crystals in the glasses electrically change the orientation of polarized light, allowing light with one orientation or the other to pass through the glasses to the contact lens." via EurekAlert

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Samsung to Buy Germany's Novaled "Despite continued difficulties in producing OLED screens, Samsung has been heavily investing in the technology. It aims to develop expertise in the area to get an edge against rivals elsewhere in Asia, who won't catch up on the technology as fast as they did with liquid-crystal displays. "We're continuously widening the technological gap between (Samsung) and rivaling companies," Robert Yi, head of investor relations at Samsung Electronics said in July. He said the company aims for another technology "leap" with diversified OLED applications, including flexible displays." via The Wall Street Journal

Display Glass Slimming Technology Report 2013 "Reducing the thickness of a glass substrate to cut its weight has proven to be the most effective way to make a flat panel display thinner and lighter. However, if a glass substrate used in the TFT or cell manufacturing process starts off as a thin sheet, it runs into many difficulties because of the variables arising from the LCD module, or OLED manufacturing process. Thus, it is essential to slim the glass substrate through chemical and physical methods at the time when the cell production process is completed. This process is called glass slimming." via Displaybank

AquaTop turns water into a touchscreen display "A projection system called AquaTop uses water as an interactive display, allowing users' limbs to freely move through, under, and over the projection surface for a more immersive experience. The prototype setup, created by a team of engineers from Tokyo's University of Electro-Communications, projects games, movies, and photos (or, presumably, e-mail and spreadsheets, but they're not as much fun) onto a liquid surface made cloudy with an opaque powder." via CNET

Oxide semiconductors: where do they fit in the changing display industry? "Oxide semiconductor TFT technology is an emerging option which ticks many of the right boxes. They have high mobility, which makes them suitable for OLED, 3D and on-board processing. They have wide-bandgaps therefore they can also be transparent. Their high mobility enables lower aspect ratio and smaller pixels, and therefore lower consumption and higher resolution." via Evertiq

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Q&A with Harman: Automotive head-up displays "As the HUD projects images on to the car's windscreen, there can be severe limitations on the amount of windscreen space available for projecting directional images. Depending on the car's design, this can hamper the functionality of the HUD. As the technology develops, we expect to be able to overcome such an issue in the near future. In scenarios where a HUD may not be appropriate, a second screen in the driver's line-of-sight can be used to display a real-time image of the road interlaced with information, graphics and navigation instructions provided by the Augmented Navigation system." via just-auto

Harvard researching how to improve displays and digital imaging "A second study involving Zickler investigates a new type of screen hardware that displays different images when lit or viewed from different directions. By creating tiny grooves of varying depths across the screen’s surface, Zickler’s team created optical interference effects that cause the thin surface to look different when illuminated or viewed from different angles. The paper essentially asks, “If I know what appearances I want the screen to have, how do I optimize the geometric structure to get that?” Zickler explains.via Harvard

Touch interface without touchscreens? "Researchers at Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) have developed this eyeglass-based display, below, that uses images projected onto the lenses, and depth cameras focusing beyond the lenses, to create the functional illusion of operating a 'floating touchscreen'..." via Core77

The North American Display Business Environment "For the most part, the manufacture of display panels takes place outside North America, with the lion’s share of fabs in Asia. But there is display manufacturing of a different kind in North America – display integration. Says Semenza, “These are opportunities where some kind of customization is required – in the medical, military, and automotive markets, for example.” Such customization includes optical bonding, rugged packaging, light-enhancement films, enhanced backlights, and so forth for a wide variety of applications. Examples of these are adding displays to autos and building units and integrating displays for the medical, military, and industrial markets, with the latter including digital signage, public-access kiosks, ATMs, checkout systems, machine control, and oil and gas exploration as well as mining applications." via The Society for Information Display

Maintaining good touchscreen user experience "Capacitive touchscreens operate by driving a transmit voltage into the sensor panel on the device that creates a signal charge. ...The main problem with larger screens is that the transmit voltage has more surface area to cover and the resistance and capacitance of the sensor increases. ...The transmit operating frequency affects signal settling, refresh rate and power consumption. The goal is to determine the highest transmit operating frequency conditions for a consistent touch response across the panels while minimising scan time and power." via EET Asia

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Multi-Touch Industrial HMIs "The ultimate promise of multi-touch technology is that it will make workers more productive. American Industrial Systems has a whitepaper that might be interesting if you want to learn more about the evolution of this technology and the specific advantages it offers for industrial control. A Beckhoff video might also be interesting as an introduction to the technology. It provides a visual demonstration of how multi-touch technology is being implemented for industrial control." via DesignNews

Indium tin oxide, what makes touchscreens touch-sensitive, is almost gone "Some manufacturers are already planning on incorporating ITO alternatives into their devices. Foxconn might begin using carbon nanotubes in the non-Apple devices it makes by the end of 2013, and Samsung is working on prototypes that use graphene, according to Martinez. “There’s lots of R&D to be done though,” Martinez said." via GigaOM

Crowdsourcing with digital signage ""Our studies suggested that people walk up to public displays not knowing exactly what they want to do and usually to kill time. So we tried to find a way to tap into that," he says. ...Vassilis says such displays could be used to tap local knowledge, such as the best place to walk a dog, the meaning of some confusing signage, or what bands are playing in town." via NewScientist

Lack of critical avionic displays played role in 2009 Air France Flight 447 crash "As forward thrust was lost, downward momentum was gathering. Instead of the wings slicing neatly through the air, their increasing angle of attack meant they were in effect damming it. In the next 40 seconds AF447 fell 3,000 feet, losing more and more speed as the angle of attack increased to 40 degrees. The wings were now like bulldozer blades against the sky. Bonin failed to grasp this fact, and though angle of attack readings are sent to onboard computers, there are no displays in modern jets to convey this critical information to the crews. One of the provisional recommendations of the BEA inquiry has been to challenge this absence." via The Telegraph

BOE Technology Group places significant orders for Applied Materials display production equipment "The Applied PiVot PVD and PECVD systems selected by BOE provide a high-performance, cost-effective path to manufacturing stunning high resolution amorphous silicon, metal oxide and LTPS displays. These systems can significantly increase production and achieve the same economies of scale that enabled the cost of LCD TVs to fall by more than 95 percent over the past decade and brought large-area LCD televisions within the reach of billions of consumers around the globe." via Solid State Technology

The Human Body as Touchscreen Replacement "Sean Gustafson, Bernhard Rabe, and Patrick Baudisch from the Hasso Plattner Institute in Germany designed a so-called imaginary interface situated within the palm of the user's hand. This UI is "imaginary" in the sense that there's nothing actually there beyond the naked hand. The photo below shows how an imaginary "mobile phone" could be fitted onto the user's left hand. As each point is touched, a specific mobile function would be activated and announced by a computerized voice." via Nielsen Norman Group

Direct-Dry-Film Optical Bonding: Finding New Applications "OPTICAL BONDING in display products was first used for CRTs and then for flat-panel LCDs around 1980. The technology was confined mostly to low-volume high-performance avionics and military displays for a long time afterward. During the last 6 years, optical bonding has exploded in many commercial and industrial applications, such as iPhones, touch screens, tablets, digital signage, and medical imaging. Optical bonding has grown to a multi-billion (~ $2 billion) industry and is still growing at a fast pace. Liquid bonding has been the most popular optical-bonding technology for many years, but dry-film optical bonding is also gaining in popularity." via The Society for Information Display

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Saturday
Jun152013

Display Technology News Roundup 6.15.2013

Image via Discovery News

Transparent Solar-Cell Screen Charges Phone "Startup Ubiquitous Energy, a spin off from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is developing a technology that makes the solar cells themselves transparent by using materials that only absorb infrared and ultraviolet light and let visible light pass through. Researchers at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) are taking a similar approach, while researchers at the University of Cambridge are weaving solar cells into organic light emitting diode (OLED) displays, where they can capture light leaked from the edges of the OLED elements as well as from outside the phone." via Discovery News

Society For Information Display Applauds Winners at Display Week 2013 "Display of the Year: Granted to a display with novel and outstanding features such as new physical or chemical effects, or a new addressing method. Gold Award: Sharp and Semiconductor Energy Laboratory (SEL) for Sharp's IGZO LCD (as used in the AQUOS Phone Zeta SH-02E). Silver Award: Shenzhen China Star's 110-inch 4K x 2K 3D TFT-LCD TV" via PRNewswire

Worldwide Microdisplays Market "Microdisplays are small displays that require magnifying optics to use them. These displays are made of a CMOS chip that includes a two dimensional array of transistors. In combination with the liquid crystal material, a cover glass yields a reflective LCD. Microdisplays are generally used in head mounted displays, projectors, view finders, or in other lens view display systems. Continuous and rapid development in display technology has made the way for different types of displays in the commercial market in the past few years." via SBWire

Amazon Acquires Display Maker Liquavista "Liquavista uses a technology called electrowetting to develop color displays for e-readers and portable media players. The first commercially available electrowetting display panels are expected to arrive this year, according to the Digital Reader. ...Electrowetting produces displays with advantages in a couple of key areas—viewability in various lighting conditions and low-power video playback. Amazon, a leading maker of both ereaders and tablets, may be interested in Liquavista's technology for both device categories." via PCMag

New Quantum Dots Make Colors in LCD Even Brighter "In work that appears to tip the scales further for quantum dot-enabled LCDs, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) have developed a method for doping quantum dots that will give LCDs a color vibrancy not seen before. In research published in the ACS journal Nano Letters ("Cluster-Seeded Synthesis of Doped CdSe:Cu4 Quantum Dots"), the UIC team reveal a method for introducing precisely four copper ions into each and every quantum dot. This doping with copper ions opens up the potential for fine-tuning the optical properties of the quantum dots and producing extraordinarily bright colors." via IEEE Spectrum

Japan Display expands manufacturing "Japan Display President Shuichi Otsuka announced yesterday that the company is boosting capacity of high-definition LCD manufacturing at its plant in Chiba as it has set its target sales this year at 800 billion yen (7.8 billion US dollars), almost double the 450 billion yen it earned last fiscal year. “Our business is now on track,” said Otsuka, who previously was CEO at Elpida Memory Inc. “Our technology is unique, so it won’t be easy for other companies to do the same.” By competitors, Otsuka means companies like Sharp Corp. also from Japan, South Korea’s LG Electronics and Samsung Electronics Co. and Taiwan’s Innolux Corp., also big names in the display-making industry and sharing the market with Japan Display. Japan Display’s share of the global market for small- and mid-sized LCDs was 16.6 percent in 2012, Sharp Corp. held 14.8 percent, followed by LG Display Co.’s 13.5 percent and Innolux’s 10.2 percent." via Japan Daily Press

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Displays market loves LED lighting "In conclusion, the benefits of using LED lighting in an automotive environment has several positive implications. First, they never need to be replaced, since their solid state longetivity is in excess of 100K hours – equivalent to 11.5 service years, thereby surpassing the life of the vehicle. This allows automobile manufactures to permanently embed them into “in cabin” backlighting without requiring accessibility for replacement. Styling can also be dramatically altered as LED lighting systems do not require the depth or area as do CCFL bulbs." via Electronics Weekly

Glasses-free 3D display for theaters "It is not surprising that almost every movie is now produced in 3D. An additional incidental benefit is a reduction in illegal in-theater recording of movies. However, there are several reasons why some people are against 3D movies, in particular the discomfort of wearing special glasses. Yet, even though glasses-free 3D display technology has been commercialized for personal devices, such as the Nintendo 3DS, significant limitations must still be overcome for theater-scale projection. For glasses-free display, special optical parts must be installed in front of the screen, which interrupts original images from a projector and is incompatible with conventional theaters. ...To meet this demand, we have developed a glasses-free, front-projection 3D theater display system.2" via SPIE

Application scenarios for interactive OLED data-eyeglasses "The interdisciplinary project FAIR is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). It is dedicated specifically to the support of physical functions by using “hand-free applications in augmented reality“ (FAIR). Within this joint-project demonstrators for innovative human-machine-interactions will be developed. A display – similar to eyeglasses – represents the visionary interface. The control and interaction with the display will be achieved via eye movements. Thus the displayed elements can be seen but provide at the same time the possibility for interaction. This enables the user to start different computer-controlled actions via eye movements. The first steps within FAIR will focus on three special application scenarios: assistance and interaction systems for persons with disabilities, innovative human-machine-interfaces in the field of entertainment as well as information- and augmented-reality-interfaces in industrial maintenance scenarios." via nanowerk

Researchers turn regular LCDs into touchscreen "Doctoral students Ke-yu Chen and Sidhant Gupta work in the Ubiquitous Computing Lab on campus. They came up with the idea for their project, uTouch, while working on a similar project called LightWave that tested how the energy given off by any electronic devices in someone’s house and even by the human body can be manipulated to control an electronic device. The energy, called electromagnetic interference (EMI), is what caused a light bulb to dim and brighten as they moved their hands closer and farther away from the bulb. “We thought that the monitor could have a similar effect,” Chen said. It did. Chen said an LCD monitor radiates EMI, also called noise, to the power line when it is turned on. The EMI increases as the human hand approaches the screen, and uTouch captures the EMI variations and uses them as signals to detect a touch gesture." via The UW Daily

Is touch really the future of the PC? "Right now the best touch pads have an accuracy of 1mm the best touch screens have an accuracy of 7mm. Right off the bat we can see that a touch screen is 7-times less accurate than a touch pad. But there is more to it. When you use a touch pad your eyes are on the object you want to manipulate on the screen while your finger is on the pad. When you use a touch screen your finger is on the screen often blocking the item you want to manipulate. Now consider that the average finger is about 10mm across. You are now blocking the area you want to work on with your finger, which is larger than the sensor in tour touch screen." via Decrypted Tech

Scientists Discovered a New Less Expensive Technique of Creating 3D Images "Scientists at University of Glasgow's School of Physics and Astronomy discovered a new less expensive technique of creating 3D images. They created a system which makes use of the detectors that have single pixel for sensing the light instead of various pixels used in imaging sensors found in digital cameras. The detectors have the capability of judging the frequencies beyond visible light, which in turn would help in various new applications for 3D imaging in geography and medicine. The scientists explained that the single pixel detectors will cost just a few pounds in comparison to present systems which amount to thousands of pounds. " via Jagran Josh

Say Goodbye to the Sharp that We Knew "If we look at the difference between consolidated LCD sales and gross LCD sales before eliminating internal transfers, we see that only 50% to 60% of sales were external transactions in 2008–2012. The portion of external sales increased in FY2013 but the LCD assets in Sakai were removed from consolidation as part of Sharp’s effort to lighten its balance sheet in September of 2012. That means sales from Sakai’s Gen-10 lines no longer contribute to operating results. The problem with that is Sharp’s own capacity becomes only 3% of the industry and that share is declining. Sharp is already smaller than China Star (CSOT) on a consolidated business basis. Thus, Sharp has few alternatives to becoming more of a merchant supplier to other brands, like Samsung." via Display Central

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Europe honours LCD screen pioneer Martin Schadt "In 1970 the Swiss physicist achieved a breakthrough that would pave the way for LCD read-outs at first on calculators, watches and alarm clocks, and then flat-panel TVs, laptops and smartphones. But one year later his employer, Roche, thought the feat was a mismatch with its other pharmaceutical-focused efforts and canned the project. Thankfully, the decision proved short-lived and Dr Schadt helped the firm become a major supplier to the screen-making industry, as well as making further contributions to the technology's evolution. His admirers know him as the "father of the pixel", and this week the European Patent Office gave him its lifetime achievement award, noting that sales of devices featuring LCD panels totalled $120bn (£80bn) in 2012." via BBC News

Use of quantum dots with LCD screens in consumer devices edging closer to reality "Quantum dots are very small bits of semiconducting nano-crystals—they're useful because they can be confined in three spatial dimensions allowing for very tight control of emitted light at precise wavelengths. Shining a light through them produces exceptionally pure colors—applying trillions of them to a thin film allows for the display of color richness never before seen with LCD devices. Researchers have been raving about the benefits of the technology for several years while manufactures have been promising that devices with the technology would soon become available to consumers. It appears that such promises are finally about to come to fruition." via Phys.org

Apple going back to Samsung as LCD panel supplier "The industry believes that one of the reasons Apple has decided to come back to Samsung Display is because of its ability to get its hands on thin glass. Thin glass is a major component used in LCD displays that can be found in mobile devices—Apple uses them in its iPhones and iPads." via iDownloadBlog

Europe's largest liquid crystal display factory opened in Ventspils, Latvia "In its new plant in Ventspils Ltd. "EUROLCDS” will produce different types of passive liquid crystal display technology based products. The goal of the company is the global market (Europe and the USA), but primarily the European cluster of LCD products. Liquid crystal display materials will be supplied mainly from China and Japan. One of the largest business segments of the factory will be production of glass that automatically darkens when exposed to bright light for welding masks. Road signs and information display products that use EASL Polydisplay technology will also be produced. At present, the company employs 20 employees, but with the business growing, the number of employees is expected to increase up to 50; in the future there might be 50 more employees employed in distribution and administrative proceedings." via Ventspils.lv

Transparent graphene-based display could enable contact lens computers "The researchers were able to build miniature inorganic LEDs by connecting the graphene sheets together with silver nanowires into a hybrid structure. The flexible silver nanowires enabled the hybrid strucuture to maintain its high conductivity even when bent. The most important factor for using the hybrid graphene in a contact lens-based computer is its high transparency. Other transparent materials like indium tine oxide (ITO) become much less conductive when bent. When the hybrid LEDs were embedded into a regular soft contact and tested in a rabbit no ill effects were observed." via ExtremeTech

Government aid helped make Sharp's IGZO crystals a reality "To develop IGZO, Hosono received research funding from the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), an independent administrative agency affiliated with the science ministry. The agency provided 1.8 billion yen ($18 million) of funding for a five-year period beginning in 1999. Of that, around 100 million yen was used for basic research on IGZO. IGZO is dozens of times more conductive than silicon. It can make smaller TFTs and give high-definition quality to liquid crystals." via The Asahi Shimbun

The Future of 3D TV and Why ESPN Dropped Its Pioneering 3D Channel ""3D does cause people to switch off in its present form,” admitted Andy Quested, BBC’s head of 3D and HD. “About 20 percent of people find sports matches in 3D simply too long. Twenty-five percent of people are apathetic toward 3D viewing no matter the content. Another 10 percent can’t see 3D because of visual impairments, but arguably up to half the audience for 3D content is put off by having to wear glasses." Dolby is among the stakeholders arguing that glasses simply won’t work in the home." via The Hollywood Reporter

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Innolux sales drop after ceasing touch display operations "In a statement issued on Friday, Innolux reported consolidated sales of NT$37.47 billion (US$1.25 billion) last month, down 8.4 percent from a month earlier and also down 5.2 percent from a year earlier. At an investor conference on May 9, Innolux said the termination of its touch display enhancement technology operations would cut its sales by about NT$5 billion during April and last month, but its gross margin would improve accordingly." via Taipei Times

Hon Hai Annoints Display Research Center In Japan "Hon Hai Precision Industry announced that it has established a research and development center in Japan to focus on display screens and touch panels. As a part of its diversification strategy, Hon Hai is reportedly expanding its businesses outside the OEM sector. The company has continued to invest in the display screen sector; in 2012, Hon Hai acquired a 38% stake in Sharp's Sakai TV panel factory." via China Tech News

New tactile display sends information through skin instead of eyes "Your sense of touch could be the next frontier in relaying valuable contextual information if new research currently being conducted at MIT proves successful. Researchers believe it may be possible to design wearable arrays of GPS-enabled vibration motors that provide simple navigational cues or detailed data through a kind of tactile Morse code. This could lead to non-visual haptic display technology — why not check your email without even opening your eyes?" via ExtremeTech

New Technology Creates Unbreakable Smartphone Display "The plastic substrate created by Professor Yoon and his research team have greatly enhanced needed properties of heat resistance, transparency, flexibility, inner chemical capability, and tensile strength. Although the material retains flexibility as a native advantage of plastic film, its tensile strength is three times greater than that of normal glass, which is a degree similar to tempered glass. In addition, Professor Yoon’s substrate is as colorless and transparent as glass and resists heat up to 450℃, while its thermal expansivity is only 10% to 20% of existing plastics." via PCB 007

How supersensitive screens get touch-y "Have you seen a diagram of a mobile phone display? It's a lot more than the cover glass you're worried about shattering when you drop your phone. There are layers that stack up to form the whole package, from the coated cover glass on top through filters, substrate glass, and screen material, like the LCD or OLED sheaves that actually turn pixels on and off to create the picture you see on the screen." via CNET

A Pleasure To Touch: Advanced Human Machine Interface Touchscreens For Vending "Engineers need to consider three key factors when looking to embed touch control into vending machines. 1. The specified touchscreen solution must be durable, as these pieces of equipment are designed for 24/7 public use. Furthermore, some venders may be deployed in a variety of environments, including outdoors, where they will be subjected to wind, moisture and extreme temperatures. As the machines may be located in lightly supervised areas, the chosen touchscreen should be resistant to deliberate harm from vandalism, in addition to accidental scratches from users' watches and jewelry." via Vending Times

Wearable Computing Pioneer Says Google Glass Offers “Killer Existence” " [Another] thing is that we’re going to see these interfaces that augment the user’s eyes, ears, and mind in such a way that it actually helps with their daily life instead of distracts them. Suppose you’re playing a video game or watching TV. Having something that actually shows you the TV guide or a second screen while you’re doing other things is really powerful." via MIT Technology Review

Developing 3D gesture-based car dashboards "One common aspect of the systems now emerging is that the touch screen head unit represents the nexus of an ever-growing diversity of input signals such as television and DVD, live video and graphics from advanced driver assistance systems, status information from various vehicle sensors, Bluetooth communications, GPS and mapping, and Internet content such as traffic updates, news feeds and social media notifications. User interface design is critical if drivers are to gain the maximum benefit from interacting with the system without suffering distractions or information overload. Considerations for designers extend beyond the layout and menu structure to encompass multiple ways of interacting with the system; touch, gesture and voice control will all be necessary, in addition to control using buttons on the console and steering wheel." via ElectronicsWeekly

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Saturday
May112013

Display Technology News Roundup 5.11.2013

Image via io9

Here's the Real Reason Why Virtual Reality Doesn't Work Yet "So, vision and self-motion will spark a little bit of place cell activity, but balance and other sensory cues are what's fully required to properly encode a rat’s — and likely a human's — position. Moreover, the researchers speculate that other cues — like smell, sound, and textures — are what's needed to help the rats properly self-locate themselves. But looking at the scans, the researchers realized that the only spatial encoding that was being done in VR was distance. It’s clear from the study, therefore, that a variety of sensory clues must interact and compete in the brain for us to construct a robust cognitive map." via i09

A liquid crystal force to reckon with "A need for fast, solution-based processing of organic electronic devices has sparked increased interest in ‘discotic’ or disc-shaped liquid crystals. These molecules, which contain a flat aromatic core surrounded by hydrocarbon side chains, can spontaneously pile into column-like structures that could be ideal for one-way charge transport. Research led by Takashi Kajitani and Takanori Fukushima from the RIKEN Advanced Science Institute has now revealed a way to turn individual discotic columns into liquid crystal films with unprecedented hierarchical order in two dimensions ("Amphiphilic Design of a Discotic Liquid-Crystalline Molecule for Dipole Manipulation: Hierarchical Columnar Assemblies with a 2D Superlattice Structure").via Nanowerk

'Next' iPhone display production set to begin "A Japan-based report indicates that production of at least one key component for the next iPhone will begin next month. Sharp will begin volume production in June of the display "panel" for the "next" iPhone model at its Kameyama plant in Mie prefecture, according to a report in Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun, a major Japanese industrial newspaper." via CNET

LG OLED Display: 'Unbreakable' Screen in Works for Apple and Google Phones "LG is shifting away from an unprofitable LCD business into OLEDs (organix light-emitting diodes), according to the Korea Times. "LG Display will produce an 'unbreakable OLED display' -- the first phase of flexible displays -- at our AP2 line of the 4.5th-generation plant in Paju, Gyeonggi Province. The move was aimed at taking a lead over rivals in the race for next-generation displays," Frank Lee, a spokesperson for LG said." via Latinos Post

Amazon's rumoured smartphone with 3D display is an awful idea "The first problem for Operation Hologram is there's no way it won't look completely cheesy. If they couldn't make Tupac look good at Coachella, there's no way in hell they'll make him look good on your phone. Doubt our word? Take a look at the glasses-free 3D screen on the Nintendo 3DS. It's the worst reading environment ever after reading in total darkness. If you're into headaches, fuzzy images, and being let down by technology, you're going to love a smartphone that pushes 3D to your already display-weary eyes." via Wired

Bluescape, the Touchscreen That Covers a Wall "According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is working on a retina-tracking phone that produces 3D images. Those images would float above the display, allowing you to relive your Star Wars fantasy of saving Princess Leia. ...The global design director for office-furniture maker Haworth, in partnership with interactive display company Obscura Digital, has created a touchscreen that covers a conference-room wall. Like a supersize version of CNN’s (TWX) Magic Wall, Bluescape displays a unified image across 15 linked 55-inch flat-screen monitors, each equipped with 32 specialized sensors to read users’ hand movements. ..The big hurdle for Haworth will be getting the wall screen’s costs down. A decade of efforts by other companies to market an “iWall” have failed because of high prices, says Roger Kay, president of market researcher Endpoint Technologies Associates, who has not seen Haworth’s product. He cited Hewlett-Packard’s (HPQ) video collaboration and networking system Halo, sold to Polycom (PLCM) in 2011, as a similar tool hamstrung by cost. But “I love the technology,” Kay says of wall-screen designs, adding that they’re the only devices since the iPhone “that made me feel like there was a quantum leap forward.”" via Bloomberg Businessweek

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Korea launches touch screen industry forum to help domestic manufacturers grow worldwide "The Korean government has established a forum for touch screen manufacturers in the country, aimed at encouraging cooperation and boosting their global businesses. The move is part of the country’s wider goal to become the world’s second larger touch screen supplier by 2020. The organization was launched by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy today, as the Yonhap News Agency reports. Initial members include large firms like Samsung Display — a business owned by Samsung — and LG Display, in addition to some 120 small and medium touch screen manufacturers." via The Next Web

Inside the factory where Vertu assembles smartphones by hand "Vertu is one of the pioneers of using sapphire to cover its displays, a material which can only be cut with diamond tipped tools. While the screens are prepared offsite, Vertu bonds the sapphire glass to the display at its factory following 48 hours of polishing, a process unique in the industry. They’re bonded in a class 7 clean room, where the staff are clothed in hooded protective gear and the air is extracted through a system built into the windows. If you’re wondering just how clean the room is, class 7 is one step down from being suitable for surgery." via Digital Trends

Revolutionary display technology can lift the ban on digital billboards "Miortech introduces color displays that reflect sunlight, just like paper, with environmental benefits such as low power consumption and reduced light pollution overcoming the disadvantages of LED billboards. Miortech established Etulipa as a subsidiary to bring its electrowetting display technology (EWD) into the digital signage space. CEO Hans Feil states: "We can now demonstrate full color reflective displays with the same approach as in digital printing: the so-called CMY-technology. The positive feedback on our demos, which performed under different light conditions including bright sunlight, pointed us into the direction of the digital billboard applications. We found that advertisers and billboard owners are extremely keen to enable more digital boards. This technology allows for instantaneous creative updates and the ability to respond in real-time to current events and market conditions". The next step is to build a demo-digital billboard to prove our claims to advertisers and billboard owners." via EMSNow

Diamond Pixels: Galaxy S4’s unique subpixel arrangement gets a close up "This is still a PenTile arrangement – there are twice as many green subpixels as blue and red ones. However, at this resolution and pixel density, the drawbacks of PenTile arrangements are very hard to notice. For a primer on the difference between PenTile and the “regular” RGB displays, check out our Galaxy S3 vs Galaxy Note 2 comparison. According to Soneira, Samsung dubbed this novel subpixel arrangement Diamond Pixel, which is a bit misleading, considering that the subpixels (the “dots” of color that make up one pixel) are the ones that are actually diamond-shaped. Samsung probably wanted to distance this new layout from PenTile, which has often been the target of critics due to the “fuzziness” it shows around text and other fine graphics." via Android Authority

MIT tech turns any surface into a user interface "The interface-everywhere zeitgeist highlights the increasingly schizophrenic relationship between display and viewer: do we want greater usability and convenience, or do we want greater resolution and picture fidelity? As relatively low-fi displays like e-ink gain traction in everyday life, the role of the monitor will look increasingly like that of the television. Why consume Facebook the same way as Game of Thrones — does a wall post require such detail? And if a low-res display clamped against your temple can put a friend’s latest tweet next to their face as you speak to them, we might begin to wonder why we ever believed that a huge desktop screen was a good way to handle our increasingly endless digital chores in the first place." via ExtremeTech

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Garmin's Glass Cockpit "Information is displayed on the center touchscreen, as well as between the speedometer and tach. If one display goes down, the other will still function, reflecting Garmin's aviation-oriented redundancy mentality. A future head-up display is being designed into K2, as well. Interestingly, the touchscreen doesn't incorporate haptic feedback. Garmin argues it's not particularly effective and said the screens suffer unacceptable response lags. There will also be some analog technology set below the display. "In K2, we didn't put everything into the touch panel," product manager Kip Dondlinger says. "I'm still a strong believer in volume and temperature knobs and some preset buttons."" via Autoweek

Why Corning Isn't Scared of Sapphire As Disruptive Threat To Gorilla Glass "It turns out that Corning isn't scared of sapphire. The glass specialist has conducted a number of in-house tests to see how sapphire stacks up with its latest Gorilla Glass 3, with its own product coming out on top. The study involves placing two devices -- one covered in sapphire and another sporting Gorilla Glass -- into a spinning container full of everyday objects. After a 45-minute twirl, both materials are subjected to a ring-on-ring strength test that applies pressure. Corning says that Gorilla Glass withstands more than 2.5 times as much force." via The Motley Fool

Finger-free phones, full body gesturing, and our “touchscreen” future "Understatement of the century: touchscreen technology evolved at a rapid pace in the past decade. In the days of Y2K, Palm Pilots were a big deal. Five years ago? The iPhone debuted and the corresponding touchscreen explosion hasn't slowed up since. Today we're at a point where we think we understand how all the innovations in touch technology can fit into our future. But based on these last few years, good luck. Did anyone see the tablet-craze coming? The locomotive of technological innovation has yet to be derailed, but it’s come to a point where we must find particular uses and integrations for all of these advancements. Looking at how companies like Microsoft and Samsung are approaching the future of touchscreen technology may be the surest clues we can get. " via Ars Technica

Flexible smartphone curls up when it gets a call "The MorePhone is a very acrobatic smartphone. It's made with a flexible display and shape memory alloy wires. When a call comes in, it activates the wires and causes the whole phone to curl up. It's an unmistakeable visual cue that you've got someone on the line. The curling smartphone was developed by researchers at Queen's University Human Media Lab in Canada. The thin electrophoretic display that makes the movement possible was manufactured by Plastic Logic, a company specializing in plastic electronics. The alloy wires can trigger the phone to curl up at all corners, or to curl back individual corners to indicate different events, like an incoming text message or e-mail." via CNET

Frog Predicts: Flexible Displays Will Soon Change The World "As screens are reshaped, so will our experience of information. Rolston likens our tiny screens to “discrete pods of data,” whereas curved displays will break many of the natural barriers imposed by bezels. Imagine a recipe that doesn’t just appear on your wall or countertop, but can actually follow you around your kitchen, snaking its way into the nooks around faucets and refrigerator handles and presenting the pertinent information right where you need it (how many cups of water was that again? What should I be grabbing from the fridge?)." via Fast Co.DESIGN

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Why Samsung and Intel bet big on a startup that searches every word you say "But why are three very different kinds of companies — an electronics manufacturer, chip maker, and telecom giant — all so interested in this little startup? For Samsung, the maker of the Siri clone S Voice and a company with a reputation for stuffing as many disparate software features into its gadgets as it possibly can, the answer is obvious. "Samsung imagines a world not too long from now where there is a flat-screen in every room. You might have a phone or tablet they built on you, but Samsung will also have a screen in your wall or on your refrigerator," says Tuttle. "They are interested in technology that can use voice commands as an input, that can listen to a conversation and provide answers without needing to be asked."" via The Verge

The Wacky World of OLEDs "If we ever get large OLEDs right — that is, if we learn how to print the front plane; use IGZO or graphene or carbon nanotubes for the backplane; develop flexible and reliable moisture and oxygen barriers; and fabricate reliable displays via roll-to-roll processing with high manufacturing yield — there will no longer be much reason to bother with either LCDs or plasma display panels. That goal continues to inspire investment, but it continues to be very, very elusive." via Display Central

The future of 'green' screens in digital signage "With LED backlighting, for example, the backlight stays true longer and degrades in performance more slowly than a CCFL backlight, Karnani said. "So it's not that it's just an environmental initiative, there's also an improvement to the actual display from the customer's standpoint, so I would say that ends up being really a win-win," she said. "Reduced total cost of ownership absolutely goes right to the ROI for the investment; it is not only environmentally friendly, it's a better product and you're going to save money."" via Digital Signage Today

3D Computer Vision Short Course at Display Week "The course explores key elements of vision including visual perception and the human visual system (seeing vs. perceiving). Bhowmik then delves into Image formation and capture including both 2D and 3D techniques that look at four cases including single and stereo view plus 3D imaging with structured light and time of flight. He next turns to the algorithms dealing with inference and recognition (the math) and leading-edge techniques that include the importance of edge detection and why. Bhowmik shows the calculus that helps identify the edge by displaying the image as an “image intensity function” and characterizing (finding) the edge as the place of rapid change along the horizontal scan line (first derivative) citing the work of John Carry at the MIT A.I. Lab, calling it “…the most widely used edge detector in computer vision today.”" via Display Central

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Wednesday
May012013

Display Technology News Roundup 4.30.2013

Image via ExtremeTech

An elastic touchscreen into which you can literally sink your fingers "The stretchable touchscreen, dubbed Obake, was created by Dhairya Dand and Rob Hemsley, both of MIT’s Media Lab. The touchscreen basically amounts to an interactive display on top of an elastic surface. When you poke or pull at the display, depth cameras measure your movements and tell linear actuators to manipulate the elastic surface accordingly. So, if you make a pinch-and-pull motion, the depth cameras will measure it, then the linear actuators will make elastic stretch and protrude in such a way as if you’re pulling it. The surface doesn’t just create little mountains of stretched elastic; it can also create resistance if you, for example, push inward rather than pull outward." via ExtremeTech

The American Display Company That Samsung Relies On For Success "When the S4 launches this month it will have a new generation of clarity in the display, one that iPhone lovers might envy. It will be thinner. And the battery life will be extended by about 20%, even with the high definition screen. It’s about to become a better phone. The reason for this is US technology. At least that is one important reason. Technology that gives the Galaxy S4 a better screen but also longer battery life and the thinner form factor. Samsung’s Galaxy S4 relies on materials and patents from New Jersey-based Universal Display Corporation. Without Universal there would be no efficient, thin, beautiful OLED display for the S4. But Universal’s relationship with Samsung goes back through the whole Galaxy line. And it stretches far into the future." via Forbes

High-tech specs: Electronic eyeglasses offer wearers more control ""It totally removes the corridor of traditional progressive lenses," he said. "So it makes your reading seem like you're reading through single vision lenses. [It's the] same with the computer use, so instead of relying on a little corridor and adjusting your head, you can use the whole lens to see distance, intermediate and up close, so it really enhances the comfort." ...He compared the technology of the touch sensor to that of a smart phone. The eyeglasses have "a microchip, composite lenses with a thin transparent LCD-like layer, miniature rechargeable batteries and a micro-machine accelerometer to detect tilt," according to a press release. "The microchip, micro-accelerometer and miniature batteries are hidden inside the [eyeglass frame]. The transparent liquid crystal layer in each lens is able to electronically activate the reading portion when the wearer needs it."" via The Altoona Mirror

World's first smartphone for the blind "The smartphone uses Shape Memory Alloy technology, based on the concept that metals remember their original shapes, i.e. expand and contract to its original shape after use. The phone's 'screen' has a grid of pins, which move up and down as per requirement. The grid has a Braille display, where pins come up to represent a character or letter. This screen will be capable of elevating and depressing the contents to form patterns in Braille." via The Times of India

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

This Bobbing Display Lets You Read While Running On A Treadmill "Instead of simply enlarging the text to make it easier to read or relying on oversized monitors, ReadingMate allows a treadmill user to read normal-size text on a small monitor mounted in front of the machine. The system relies on infrared lights embedded in special goggles that are tracked by an infrared camera positioned in front of the runner. As the user’s head moves vertically, the system moves the text accordingly. ...In addition to letting treadmill users catch up on some reading while burning some calories, the researchers say ReadingMate could also find aviation, construction and transportation applications. Not to allow drivers and pilots to enjoy a good book while on the job, but to stabilize information displayed on screen while experiencing heavy shaking or turbulence." via Gizmag

A Simple Way to Turn Any LCD into a Touch Screen "A group of researchers from the University of Washington’s Ubiquitous Computing Lab developed a method called uTouch that uses a simple sensor and software to turn an ordinary LCD into a touch screen display. The system takes advantage of the low levels of electromagnetic interference produced by many consumer electronics, harnessing it to do things like control video playback with pokes and motions on an otherwise noninteractive screen. “All these devices around you have all these signals coming out of them, and we ignore them because we think they’re noise,” says Sidhant Gupta, a PhD candidate at the University of Washington’s Ubiquitous Computing Lab and one of the co-authors of the paper." via MIT Technology Review

Are touchscreens right for all equipment? "“With touch, you lose tactile feedback. With traditional controls a person using the instrument can continue to use the equipment without having to stare at it,” says Siegel. This is true of much research equipment, which requires simultaneous fine-tuning of several pieces of equipment at once. Sometimes functions available in one section of an application on a touchscreen are difficult to access from another section. This could be one reason TI has not seen a widespread adoption of touchscreen technology in the scientific research space. Siegel speculates that the consumer market usually sets the trend, and popular capacitive touchscreens are general overkill for research instruments." via R&D Magazine

U.S. Seeks Voluntary Limits On Car Touchscreens "The new guidelines limit simple tasks to two seconds. They also restrict the time allowed for complex tasks to 12 seconds, but do not limit the number of times a driver can touch a screen. The decision on whether a screen would freeze or shut down after 12 seconds would be left to automakers based on their own research, NHTSA said. The auto industry’s current guidelines, which are a decade old, allow drivers to read text and perform other more complex tasks while cars are moving at less than 5 mph, Strickland said. Systems now are designed so multiple-step tasks take 10 or fewer screen touches for a total of 20 seconds with a driver’s eyes off the road. But the devices won’t turn off or stop a driver from doing something that takes longer than 20 seconds." via CBS DFW

Prototype could revive glasses-free 3D displays "Dolby says they have now developed a system that encodes a 3D image stream and can decode it in real time to produce 3D without the need for glasses on "any 3D TV, tablet, laptop or smartphone" with sufficient resolution. The design requires adding a sheet of plastic with undulations that deflect light at 26 different angles simultaneously, offering effective 3D views from a wide range of angles. Because resolution is lost as an image is split and sent in different directions, the underlying display must be four times the resolution of HD television. Such displays are expensive, but they are becoming available, so 3D may yet have a future." via New Scientist

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Why Don't We Have Holodecks? "Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago recently created Cave2, the highest-resolution immersive panel display in existence. The cave is made up of 72 3D LCD panels arranged in a 320-degree shape. A special pair of glasses with tracking dots on them helps the computer know in which direction you're looking so it can adjust the images to fit your perspective. You can also use a wand, covered with sensors, to interact with the 3D objects around you. For now, the system is used for high-resolution medical-image viewing. It's cool but probably won't be in your living room anytime soon. What about recreational holodecks? Nathan Burba, director of Project Holodeck (which is exactly what it sounds like), told PM that cost has been a big issue until recently. "I would say that the technology has obviously been limited," he says. "The display technology has been locked away in military research, and there's a lack of innovation there because of the stringent requirements put on researchers."via Popular Mechanics

Google Glass is finally here: Tech specs released, first units shipped "According to the spec sheet, Google Glass will offer one full day of battery life for normal usage, but features like Hangouts and video recording will expend the battery faster. Google recommends recharging the kit with with the Micro USB cable and charger it supplies with Glass. The display resolution is the "equivalent of a 25-inch high definition screen from eight feet away", but Google is being no more specific than that. " via ZDNet

LG Rolling Out Curved OLED TVs in South Korean Market "Why curved? The idea is to offer to an IMAX-like experience in the home. A curved display also eliminates the problem of screen-edge visual distortion and loss of detail since the entire surface is equidistant from the viewer's eyes, LG says. The curved TV itself is just 4.3 millimeters (0.17 inches) thin and weighs 37.48 pounds. It uses proprietary WRGB technology and a four-color pixel system that features a white-sub pixel in addition to red, blue, and green." via HotHardware

Japan Display turns to smaller smartphone makers "Japan Display, the world's No.1 maker of small to mid-size panels, may increase sales to as much as 800 billion yen ($8.10 billion) for the fiscal year ending March 2014 from slightly below 500 billion yen a year earlier, said Shuichi Otsuka, CEO of the unlisted firm. The company, formed out of a merger of the small panel divisions of Sony Corp, Hitachi Ltd and Toshiba Corp last April, does not publicly identify its clients but is widely known as a key Apple supplier. Apple undershot Wall Street's sales forecast for the third straight quarter in the three months ended December after iPhone sales missed expectations." via Yahoo! News

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Future of Computer Human Interaction on display at Paris conference "The future of computing comes to Paris this week with the annual Computer Human Interaction (CHI) conference, which showcases new approaches to the way users connect with electronics. ...One of the big draws at the conference is the “interactivity” section, which is like a mini trade show of futuristic prototypes that attendees can try out for themselves. Gone are the days of just keyboards and mice. “We’re seeing things that go much further into the future,” Baudisch said." via PCWorld

How today’s touchscreen tech put the world at our fingertips "Because it's so different from mouse-and-keyboard-driven and stylus-driven software, touch-driven software has also transformed the hardware it runs on. Most smartphones include just a few physical buttons: power, volume, a mute switch, and the home button. Using a touchscreen as the primary input obviated the need for things like a hardware number pad or keyboard, since the screen could dynamically become whatever it needed to be. Software keyboards have become even more context-sensitive over time, adding things like a ".com" button when typing in a URL field." via Ars Technica

Aggressively combat noise in capacitive touch applications "Today, thin is in. The push to make aggressively thin form factors for touchscreen devices, especially mobile phones, creates a two-fold problem: more noise coupled into the sensor from the display and a higher parasitic capacitance of the sensor. Displays generate noise that is much lower amplitude when compared with charger noise, but they can have a huge impact on touch performance due to their close proximity to the touch sensor. While AMOLED displays are very quiet (but more expensive than LCDs), the majority of the market today is still the noisier ACVCOM and DCVCOM-type LCD displays. It is the VCOM layer, the common electrode, of these displays that is the source of their noise." via EDN

Fujitsu Laboratories New Touch-based Interface Marries Analog & Digital "Transform boring, poorly stapled business plans, press releases, marketing materials and other old fashioned paper artifacts to life using Fujitsu Laboratories’ touchscreen interface that can animate and bring a whole new dimension to real world objects. ...This amazing touchscreen interface is also non-biased and can adjust color and brightness, and skin color accordingly so that it isn’t influenced by external or environment circumstances. In addition, if you don’t want to operate the device by touch alone, you can also manipulate the sensors with gesture controls — you can explore three dimensional objects with the simple movement of your fist to get a full 360-degree view." via Gadizmo

Samsung Demos a Tablet Controlled by Your Brain "The concept of a dry EEG is not new, and it can carry the drawback of lower signal quality, but Jafari says his group is improving the system’s processing of brain signals. Ultimately, if reliable EEG contacts were convenient to use and slimmed down, a brain-controlled device could look like “a cap that people wear all day long,” says Jafari." via MIT Technology Review

Advances in capacitive touchscreen for mobiles "First, it is critical for designers to understand the underlying construction of a touchscreen system to be able to understand how technology changes are remaking this segment. The key components in a touch system include the coverlens, sensor, LCD, and PCB. The coverlens is the outward facing component of the product. This is where the consumer interacts with the screen. In some products, this coverlens could simply be a protective cover to prevent scratching and damage, or it can actually be part of the touch sensing system itself." via EET Asia

'Interactive Fish Tank' turns water into a capacitive touchscreen "Once it makes contact with the surface, Donoso explains, a finger "acts in the same way as touching a button on an iPhone or any other touch screen." Indeed, in substituting glass for water, Donoso and Moore present a different, and perhaps more accessible way to understand how capacitive touch works on traditional displays. The underlying principle is the same: a user's touch elicits some change in the surface at the point of contact, and the software reacts accordingly. Whereas smartphone displays gauge this change in terms of electric charge, "Fish Tank" measures it in ripples." via The Verge

Discomfort and fatigue from stereo 3D displays "In stereoscopic displays, images have varying binocular disparity thereby stimulating changes in vergence as happens in natural viewing. But the accommodative distance remains fixed at the display distance, so the natural correlation between vergence and accommodative distance is disrupted, leading to the so-called vergence–accommodation conflict. The conflict causes several problems. First, differing disparity and focus information cause perceptual distortions. Second, viewers experience difficulties in simultaneously fusing and focusing a stimulus. Finally, attempting to adjust vergence and accommodation separately causes visual discomfort and fatigue in viewers." via SPIE

Shapeshifters: phones of the future could morph on demand "The six working prototypes, known as "Morphees," are thin, electronic displays capable of automatically changing shape to perform certain functions. Researchers say that if brought to market, the devices could usher in a new era in mobile computing, breaking down the physical barriers that have traditionally defined smartphones, tablets, and gaming consoles." via The Verge

What did you think about today's news? Leave a comment here and share your thoughts.

Sunday
Apr142013

Display Technology News Roundup 4.15.2013

Image via Tony Law for Bloomberg Businessweek

How Samsung Became the World's No. 1 Smartphone Maker "Lee Keon Hyok predicts that smartphones will indeed become commoditized, just as PCs did in the 1990s. “But you have to remember, we make a lot of parts,” he says. “The shape may change, but phones are still going to require AMOLED displays, memory, and processors. We are well prepared to meet those changes.” AMOLED refers to active-matrix organic light-emitting diodes. It’s the state of the art and possibly the only display technology that has its own K-pop song: Amoled, a catchy 2009 number by Son Dam-bi and After School. When the mobile business ceases to be profitable, Samsung will have to force its way into some other industry that requires a lot of upfront capital and expertise in mass-manufacturing. The company announced in late 2011 that it would spend $20 billion by 2020 to develop proficiencies in medical devices, solar panels, LED lighting, biotech, and batteries for electric cars. And if Samsung batteries or MRI machines don’t take over the market, maybe the chairman will set a huge pile of them on fire. “The chairman is saying all the time, ‘This is perpetual crisis,’ ” says mobile marketing chief DJ Lee. “We are in danger. We are in jeopardy.”" via Bloomberg Businessweek

Next-Gen iPad To Be Lighter, Thinner Thanks To New Display "“It’s likely that part of the thinner/lighter design will be reducing the size of the LED backlight, partly by making the display more efficient and partly by using more efficient LEDs,” NPD DisplaySearch analyst Paul Semenza told CNET in a recent note. ”The other significant change that we feel is likely is a shift to a film-based touch sensor.” ...Apple may unveil its next-generation iPad during a special press conference later this month, though a recent rumor suggested that the new tablet won’t launch until fall 2013." via BGR

Nvidia shows off stunning graphics with Kepler Mobile chip "Nvidia chief executive Jen-Hsun Huang showed off the company’s next-generation mobile chip, dubbed Kepler Mobile. Speaking today at the company’s investor day, Huang said that Nvidia made a huge investment in transforming its high-end Kepler family of PC desktop graphics chips so they can run on mobile devices. ...The new chip will be able to play high-end PC games such as Battlefield 3, pictured in the video below. That means that Kepler Mobile could enable mobile devices — smartphones and tablets — to run DirectX 11 graphics, with high-end features such as advanced shadows and lighting. To date, this hasn’t been possible — by a long shot — on mobile devices." via VentureBeat

What’s New in Multi Touch Technology? "By offering a more complete picture of how modern multi-touch technology is impacting business, the more we can better understand the environmental, ergonomic, economic and workflow enhancements that are resulting from innovations of this technology. This paper focuses specifically on new and existing users of equipment in the fields of building automation and HVAC, medical & healthcare, interactive and self-service kiosks. Moreover, it evaluates the most current technologies, features and benefits of multi-touch technology." via AIS

Pixelligent Technologies launches PixClear Zirconia nanocrystals for increased light output in touchscreens "When incorporated into existing products, the nanoadditives can dramatically increase light output and readability of modern touch screens and displays. PixClear, Pixelligent officials say, also increases the light output of products for lighting applications such as HB-LEDs and OLEDs. Prior to Pixelligent, nanocrystal dispersions suffered from aggregation and were cloudy, difficult to process, and unstable, which prevented their commercial adoption. But Pixelligent officials claim their PixClear dispersions are something new: they're perfectly clear. These clear dispersions allow Pixelligent to deliver precise control over the target applications’ optical, chemical and mechanical properties." via Solid State Technology

Planar Releases 3D BIM Models of LCD Displays and Video Walls through Autodesk Seek "Digital display company Planar Systems Inc. has announced that 3D Building Information Modeling (BIM) models of select Planar large format LCD displays and video walls are now available free through the Autodesk Seek web service. Autodesk Seek allows architects, engineers and designers to easily find, preview and download 3D models of Planar displays. They can then incorporate these models into their building plans without having to create the models themselves." via Digital Signage Connection

Touchscreen Gestures Reimagined as Sculptures "In an era when kids become intimately familiar with tablet and smartphone devices at a young age, designer Gabriele Meldaikyte captured today's touchscreen gestures in analog form. As shown in the video above, Meldaikyte's mixed-media exhibit reimagines the language of smartphone communication as sculptures; there's pinching, tapping, scrolling, flicking and swiping. ...Although touchscreen gestures are common today, there could be a shift towards more intuitive ways of control such as voice command (e.g. Google's Project Glass)." via Mashable

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Convergent screens, content and data creating 'One Screen' to rule them all "Today the consumer disposition changes based on two things: where they are and what they are doing. For instance, a personal screen (tablet, mobile) or the screen on the wall becomes a point of wait whenever the consumer has "Dwell Time." They could be in line getting coffee or at a doctor's office. When the consumer is driving down the road, or at a train station or airport, the consumer is "On the Go," and their screen or the screen in the venue or on the roadside becomes a point-of-transit screen, where the messages are brief and about the brand. And when the consumer is either in a retail environment or just sees something they want to buy, the screen then becomes a point of sale, where the consumer is now a "Shopper."" via Digital Signage Today

China panel makers continue to improve their panel technology "China-based panel makers BOE, Tianma Micro-electronics and China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) are showing increasing signs of improved technology and are likely to start producing more high-end panel products in 2013. The panel makers currently use a-Si TFT technology to produce Ultra HD (3840 by 2160) TV panels but are looking into using IGZO technology in 2013 instead. The makers are also aiming to release 400ppi smartphone panels during the year." via DigiTimes

Computing Pioneer Alan Kay Talks About The Past, Present, and Future of User Interfaces "Part of the motivation for the PARC GUI came from our desire to have a universal display screen which could display anything — this led to the bitmap screen. One drawback of these screens and the screens today is that the visual angle of the display (about 40°) is much narrower than the human visual field (which is about 135° vertically and 160° horizontally for each eye). This is critical because most of the acuity of an eye is in the fovea (~1-2°) but the rest of the retina has some acuity and is very responsive to changes (which cause the eye to swing to bring the fovea on the change). Head mounted displays can have extremely wide fields of view, and when these appear (they will resemble lightweight glasses), they will allow a rather different notion of UI — note that huge fields of view through glasses will help both 2-1/2 D and 3D graphics, and the UIs that go along with them. This suggests many new design ideas for future GUIs, and they will slowly happen." via Time

Novel Plastic Film Displays Glasses-Free 3-D Images For Mobile "The film is basically a lenticular lens, which is a series of tiny lens elements that direct light to each eye. The nanoimprinting technology developed at IMRE makes it possible to create this type of lens on a plastic film. “The filter is essentially a piece of plastic film with about half a million perfectly shaped lenses engineered onto its surface using IMRE’s proprietary nanoimprinting technology,” said Jaslyn Law, the IMRE scientist who worked with TP on the nanoimprinting R&D since 2010, in a press release." via IEEE Spectrum

Quantum Dots in LCD Before OLED "As you read this, retailers are putting Sony model W009A BRAVIA TV sets on shelves around the USA. We’ll be seeing quantum dots in LCD before OLED for sure. It didn’t look that way a few years back, so I thought it would be interesting to bring us all up-to-date on the industrial and commercial development of quantum dot (QD) technology for display applications. ...Given the extent of industrial development, I expect to see more results soon. OLED TV has not progressed as fast as hoped and LCD makers need extra features to justify UHD prices. This looks like the right time for LCD color gamut to become a key product feature and reason for consumer upgrades." via Display Central

Interactive Holographic Video Display "Holoxica announces an Interactive Holographic 3D Display, which is a second generation prototype. The design is inspired by Head-Up Displays (HUDs), based on free-space optics with images floating in mid-air that can change in real-time. ...The interactive holographic display system comprises a Holographic Optical Element (HOE) lens, a digital controller, a motion sensor and a projection subsystem (a laser projector) imaging a diffusion screen. The HOE is about the size of a page (20x30cm) and the images are formed in real space (in mid-air) about 20cm from the hologram plane. The image are about the size of a hand (up to 7x7cm). The images can be refreshed at video rates and arbitrary images can be displayed. However, the images are formed in three distinct planes, corresponding to the colours of the lasers in the laser projector i.e. red, green and blue. ...Immediate applications of this technology include HUD-style displays and novel user-interfaces with the added dimensions of real-space interactivity. " via Holoaxica

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An introduction to CPI's OLED prototype line facility "The Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) is a UK based R&D institute that helps companies develop and scale manufacturing processes. The CPI sent us the following video and update on its OLED/OPV prototype line (built by MBraun) that was designed to enable materials companies, device designers and end users to develop their technology within a fully automated, controlled environment. CPI's system supports both small evaporized and soluble OLED materials." via OLED-Info

LCD VS Plasma TVs "For those of you who care to understand the science behind [Plasma TVs], here’s how the magic happens: An electrode applies an electrical current to a small cell filled with a noble gas mixture (usually neon and xenon). This excites the gas, ionizing it and transforming it into a plasma. This plasma emits ultraviolet light – which we can’t see – but when the UV light hits a phosphor coating that lines each cell, it causes the phosphor to glow and put out light that we can see. Depending on which particular phosphor the cell is coated with, it will create a red, green, or blue glow. Just like with LCD displays, each cluster of red green and blue subpixels makes up one pixel on the screen (see header image)." via Digital Trends

QD Vision secures $20m to ramp production of components for LCD applications "According to the company, Color IQ significantly improves LCD color performance. Until now, most mainstream LCD TV designs have had to sacrifice color quality, typically only delivering 60-70 percent of the NTSC color standard. Color IQ increases typical LCD color performance by up to 50 percent and is capable of delivering 100 percent of the NTSC standard, QD Vision said." via Boston.com

George Gray, the man who made flat screens possible "Gray didn't invent liquid crystals. In fact, they are quite common; every cell in our body is surrounded by a liquid crystalline membrane. Nor did he demonstrate that liquid crystals have the flippable characteristic that makes them suitable for displays. Gray's breakthrough was to develop molecules that are flippable at room temperatures. But just like so many great innovations the road to development was far from easy largely because there was little appetite for funding research on molecules that, at the time, had no clear applications. Turning liquid crystals from curiosities into the ubiquitous technologies that they are today required both a burning need for new displays and the foresight of one of the more colourful government ministers." via The Guardian

Apple job listing confirms Apple is investigating using flexible displays in future products "Flexible display rumors have picked up steam even more since rumors of an iWatch from Apple, and just today we came across two new Apple patent applications detailing flexible devices that could change states as a user bends or twists the device. We all know Apple patent applications have never been a good indication of future product releases, but now Apple has came right out and stated in a job listing that it is indeed considering flexible displays. "Apple Inc. is looking for a Display Specialist to lead the investigation on emerging display technologies such as high optical efficiency LCD, AMOLED and flexible display to improve overall display optical performance."" via 9to5Mac

OLEDs and the beginning of the end for LCDs "In 2012 Samsung Electronics moved their LCD business units into a separate entity. One report suggests that the Taiwanese have invested $60 Billion in the LCD industry and seen a return of just $40 Billion. Some Japanese makers, despite having superb technology, have seen recent losses in some cases equal cumulative profits of the preceeding 5 to 10 years. Restructuring is therefore afoot. In the last few weeks Samsung purchased a 3% stake in Sharp. Japan Display Inc (JDI), puts together small and mid sized LCD panel manufacture units from Sony, Hitachi and Toshiba, focusing on automotive, cellphone and digital camera displays (not TV). Meanwhile, the Chinese are quickly moving into LCD panel production. For many years the top five in the LCD business, in order, were Samsung, LG Display, Innolux, AUO and Sharp. Now, as evidence of China's progress, in late 2012 Chinese BOE is number 5 for notebooks and monitors and China Star (CSOT) number five for TVs." via Printed Electronics World

Epson Concedes It Showed Reflective-LCD Projector Too Soon "The reflective LCD technology differed from conventional high-temperature polysilicon (HTPS) in that the polarized light rays don't pass through the panel but rather are reflected back at a different angle than they came in on. But the reflective technology also required a more complex polarized beam splitter to combine red, green and blue images and took semiconductor controllers out of the optical path and put them behind individual pixels." via Consumer Electronics Daily

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Multi-focal AR contact lenses work for both near and far "The idea behind the iOptik, is that the contact focuses foreground light, like that from a nearby monitor, onto the center of the pupil. The background light is focused on the surrounding (annular) regions of the pupil. This resembles currently prescribed multi-focal contact lenses, which seem to work quite well — only these guys are just a little more extreme in the separation of the two fields. As shown in the video above, the image is projected directly onto display components that are integral to a pair of special glasses. Superimposing full-field 3D virtual images, which would be particularly enticing for the gaming world, would be seamless with such a device. Interaction with avatars would take place in the whole user space rather than just on a limited screen." via ExtremeTech

Japan Display has begun to see profits "Japan Display is a joint venture of Japan-based firms such as Sony, Toshiba and Hitachi with 70% of shares owned by government-affiliated institutes. Sony, Toshiba, and Hitachi each owns 10% of shares. Japan Display was established on April 1, 2012 with capital of JPY230 billion (US$2.3 billion) and currently employs around 6,200 staff. Otsuka noted that Japan Display focuses on LTPS-CMOS technology and expects panel capacity to increase to six million units in 2014 due to minimizing non-silicon based technology capacity and focus on expanding LTPS capacity." via DigiTimes

Displays defy distraction at New York Auto Show "At BMW, where analog instrument clusters are part of the classic BMW look, many of the high-tech electronic displays in 2014 models mimic analog dials. Even the BMW Concept Active Tourer premium compact car displayed at the show has a rounded albeit digital electronic instrument cluster. Here again the large display in the futuristic infotainment console isn’t a touchscreen. The only touchscreens are the two removable iPad-like displays facing the rear passenger seats, which also have access to handy fold-down trays." via TechHive

Smell-o-vision screens let you really smell the coffee "The "smelling screen", invented by Haruka Matsukura at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology in Japan and colleagues, makes smells appear to come from the exact spot on any LCD screen that is displaying the image of a cup of coffee, for example. It works by continuously feeding odours from vaporising gel pellets into four air streams, one in each corner of the screen. These air streams are blown out parallel to the screen's surface by fans, and varying the strength and direction of them manoeuvres the scent to any given spot on the screen." via NewScientist

Bendable screens still need a breakthrough ""There are barrier films in all sorts of products, for example food packaging, but the challenge is that OLED is one of the most sensitive materials we follow, and so creates huge challenges," says Lux Research's Melnick. Singapore-based Tera-Barrier Films, for example, has developed a way to plug leaks in the layers using nanoparticles. Director Senthil Ramadas says that after years of delays the company last month started production in Japan and aims for mass production by end-2014. "You have several challenges in the value chain," he said. "All these things need to be established, and only now is it coming out." And there's another problem: all the materials in a bendable display need to be bendable, too — including the transparent conductors that drive current through the display. Several technologies are vying to replace the brittle and expensive Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) used in most fixed displays, including nanowires, carbon nanotubes, graphene and conductive mesh." via NBCNews

Is Samsung safe from the threat of Korean war? "Samsung's primary hedge against the threat of war remains its massive geographic diversification of manufacturing assets, experts note. While Crystal Valley, a two million sq ft complex built on a former vineyard that employs about 20,000 workers, is an important cog in the Samsung machine, particularly in LCD display manufacturing, it's just a small part of the company's global capabilities. The company boasts five other plants worldwide that could pick of the display manufacturing slack in the event of a global shutdown."via Channelweb

Three-dimensional displays, past and present "The ultimate goal of display technology is to show a dynamic three-dimensional image that appears to float without a frame, much as Princess Leia did when projected from R2-D2 in the 1977 movie Star Wars. The history of 3D displays begins in a much earlier time—long before the advent of movies, holography, or electronics. It goes back to 1838 when Charles Wheatstone at King’s College London proposed the concept of the stereoscope, which works based on binocular disparity: Because our two eyes, physically separated by about six and a half centimeters, observe different perspectives of an object, the illusion of depth can be created from two 2D images whose features are slightly offset from each other. The brain merges those two images into a single 3D perspective." via Physics Today

Laser Fusion’s Brightest Hope "Here at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a U.S. national security laboratory tucked amid vineyards and undulating grassy hills about an hour east of San Francisco, the lasers of the National Ignition Facility (NIF) have already created the intense pressures and temperatures needed to get atoms of hydrogen to fuse. But NIF is trying to achieve a far more challenging goal, one that countless researchers have sought for decades. NIF’s aim is not just fusion but fusion’s equivalent of a chain reaction, a self-sustaining “burn” capable of producing more energy than is needed to get the process started in the first place. ...The laboratory has also built a small industry around damage mitigation. After a laser shot, engineers can use a telescope in the target chamber to look back through every line of optics for damage; each defect gets a number. They then use blue LEDs to program liquid-crystal-based screens through which beams pass before amplification. These screens can be made to have any arbitrary pattern of transparent and opaque areas, creating dark spots in a beam in order to circumvent damaged areas down the line. When too many defects accumulate, the engineers remove the damaged component and send it to another building, where the surface is re-treated and carbon dioxide lasers are used to etch out damage, leaving behind optically neutral conical pits. Nowadays, up to 40 pieces of optics, mostly the target-chamber focus lenses and debris shields—protective screens between the target chamber and the rest of the optical line—are pulled and sent away to be refurbished each week." via IEEE Spectrum

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Thursday
Mar072013

Display Technology News Roundup 3.7.2013

Image via Jinha Lee / NBC News

3-D computing prototype puts your hands inside the screen "Attendees of the latest TED conference got a look at a futuristic device called SpaceTop where the user views a 3-D workspace through a transparent display, manipulating the on-screen elements with just their hands. It won't be on shelves any time soon, but it does pique the imagination. ...The transparent display is equipped with a camera that tracks the user's head and adjusts the perspective on the 3-D desktop "under" it. Meanwhile, a second camera watches the user's hands and determines their position in three dimensions." via NBC News

Sharp Samsung Alliance – An Alliance of Mutual Benefits "Given that Sharp is a leader in oxide TFT technology, especially at Gen 8, it’s possible that Samsung can utilize the oxide TFT backplanes from Sharp for its AMOLED TV." via DisplaySearch Blog

Samsung's investment in Sharp could prick Apple "Apple is believed to buy about a third of its LCD panels from Sharp, and it closely relies on the company for some of its most advanced products, according to analysts. When Sharp has problems, it can slow down the release of Apple devices. So if Sharp starts to favor Apple's chief rival, Samsung, that could have big implications for Apple." via CNET

LG Display Overtakes Samsung in Global LCD Market ""LG Display has found new customers such as Sony and Panasonic and increased production accordingly," analyst So Hyun-chul of Shinhan Investment Corp. said. "It has gained a foothold for growth by supplying most LCD products for Apple's iPads in the explosively growing tablet PC market." In contrast, Samsung failed to increase sales dramatically because it is highly dependent on a single customer, affiliate Samsung Electronics." via The Chosunilbo

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Air Force takes first step in replacing obsolete CRT displays in F-15E jet fighter-bomber "The project calls for eliminating obsolescent or otherwise-troublesome technology in the MPD such as CRT avionics display technology and high-voltage components. The replacement display must not affect the present MPD interaction with the Boeing advanced display core processor (ADCP) or change the operational flight program, Air Force officials say. ...The sources-sought notice is a market survey to identify suppliers with the necessary expertise, capabilities, and experience to develop a replacement MPD for the F-15E." via Military & Aerospace Electronics

5 Tech Stocks That Could Leap On Touchscreen Trends "Sollensys manufactures multi-touch sensor modules for use in the government, education, medical and consumer technology sectors. The company’s goal is to be the leading global provider of small to medium sized capacity touch sensors to the high quality and advanced technology spectrum of the touchscreen market. Through consultation with customers, Sollensys designs, develops and delivers the best possible touch sensor technology for its products. Much like Apple, Sollensys provides a high quality product through excellence in design, advanced process and production techniques, and quality control. Sollensys aims to be a leader in the capacitive touch industry, which is the company’s core technology." via Investment Underground

Flexible, transparent imaging device developed "The new imager, which resembles a flexible plastic film, uses fluorescent particles to capture incoming light and channel a portion of it to an array of sensors framing the sheet. With no electronics or internal components, the imager's elegant design makes it ideal for a new breed of imaging technologies, including user interface devices that can respond not to a touch, but merely to a simple gesture, the journal Optics Express reports. ...The main application the researchers envision for this new technology is in touch-free, transparent user interfaces that could seamlessly overlay a TV or other display technology, according to a [Johannes Kepler University Linz] statement. " via Zeenews

Wearable display meets blindfold test for sensing danger "Researchers at the University of Illinois in Chicago have developed a special set of body modules that provide wearers with extra-sensory perception as to who or what is nearby. The design could help the blind navigate safely or even support cyclists or drivers as additional safety support in traffic. Called SpiderSense, this is a wearable display that can pick up ultrasonic reflections from objects. SpiderSense can also allow the wearer, even if eyes are closed, to navigate." via Phys.org

Beyond a Human Framework of International Relations "Diplomats could soon be wearing AR contact lenses or glasses that will translate in real-time a native’s foreign language, presenting the information like movie subtitles on the lens or glass in that diplomat’s own native tongue. They will be able to translate a newspaper in another language with a glance, access data on treaties and current news events while undergoing diplomatic negotiations, or even assess the disposition of a foreign contact by using lie detection sensors and emotional cues—all displayed immediately through the AR lens interface. The technology has already been used by U.S. Marine mechanics to help them with more efficient repairs. Detailed specifications, for instance, can instantaneously be displayed through goggles when looking over an engine. Other branches of armed forces continue to use and develop new adaptations." via Diplomatic Courier

Swedish university invests in virtual medical display technology "The Sectra Visualization Table is a large, multi-touch medical display with software that facilitates interaction with 3D images of the human body created by modern computer tomography or magnetic resonance cameras. Students are able to intuitively zoom in, rotate or cut into the visualized body without using a scalpel or destroying the subject. This means that the same image can be used repeatedly, and the students are able to study the impact of various illnesses on the anatomy in a manner that was not possible in teaching in the past." via European Hospital

Why E Ink is still the leader in e-paper "Overall, E Ink electrophoretic displays win on production cost. Unlike Liquavista and Mirasol, E Ink displays are compatible with roll-to-roll manufacturing using printing technologies. This has allowed the company to rapidly scale up and produce the electrophoretic material at high volume and high yield, thus offering the product at the right price point for the e-reader market. As of today, Liquavista is still not commercialized despite the fact the technology has been in development for roughly the same amount of time as E Ink's. Mirasol e-readers were sold in East Asia but did not attract enough traction, most likely because the devices were too expensive. " via Printed Electronics World

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Thoughts on AMOLED and LCD displays in 2013: Is there a clear winner? "In smartphone displays, LCD displays offer a few key advantages over AMOLED displays. Due to the "direct sunlight argument" where the Sun distorts colors and the image projected on AMOLED screens, LCD displays hold a clear advantage. At full brightness, LCD displays get much brighter than their AMOLED counterparts and also use less power in the process. They are miles ahead of AMOLED displays outside, and I'd say this is nearly an undenaible truth, and not an opinion. It's important to mention that LCD displays are only more efficient at full brightness as compared to AMOLED. AMOLED screens are more efficient all around, just not when the brightness is cranked up." via phonedog

LED-backlit display penetration rate to break 90% "LEDinside noted that there are price differences between the side-lighting mode and the bottom-lighting mode of the LED-backlit display technology. The cost of side-lighting mode is 1.5 times that of the bottom-lighting mode as the manufacturing process of the former is more complicated and calls for more expensive parts and components, it said. More than 70 percent of the TV products of South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Corp. use the cheaper bottom-lighting mode, while Taiwan's AU Optronics and" via Focus Taiwan

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A Different Concept on the Future of Helicopter Avionics "“We’ve decided that touchscreens are not the way to go, for reasons of durability and practicality,” said Grady Dees, director of technical sales for Universal Avionics Systems. MD Helicopters vice president of engineering Chris Nehls heartily agreed. “The on-cyclic cursor control keeps the pilot focused on flying, we think,” said Nehls. The engineers decided, as well, to retain certain key knobs that pilots rely on, including the heading bug knob on the panel under the PFD. “It is what pilots are used to, and we want to make the system easy to transition to,” he continued. There is also a separate EFIS control display unit located on the center console that houses all of the buttons and knobs that are conspicuously missing from the bezel of the 12-inch PFD/MFD displays." via AINonline

A Comparison of AU Optronics, LG Display and Sollensys "To sum up, AU Optronics and LG Display have demonstrated poor profitability in the last few years. However, in a fast-growing market as the touch screen panels, a quick turnaround is possible, which may reward their shareholders. It is well known that turnarounds of companies are the most rewarding situations in the stock market. According to analysts' estimates, a turnaround for LG Display is likely in 2013. Sollensys is a nascent company with high expertise and valuable patents. It is promising fast growth, but one should carefully evaluate the audited financial statements of the company when they become available, just as one should do with any investment." via Smallcap Network

Sapphire is unscratchable, unbreakable, and the next big thing in touchscreens "GT Advanced demonstrations were compelling, and the science seems to back it up. Sapphire is a naturally growing crystal and is the second hardest substance on earth. It’s so hard, only diamond-tipped saws can cut it. GT Advanced grows sapphire and then melts and hardens them into ‘boules,’ which are 115 kilogram, or 254 lb. clear cylinders. Those cylinders are then cut into cubes, which are then chopped up into slices and shapes as thin and wild as you can imagine." via Digital Trends

Mobile displays that change shape "GHOSTs are display surfaces made of malleable materials that can change into and retain arbitrary shapes so as to display output from the system or allow new actions. At the same time, GHOSTs enable users to deform, touch, or otherwise manipulate the shape of their display surface to provide input to the system. The collaborative European research project includes Sriram Subramanian, Professor of Human-Computer Interaction in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Bristol, and will bring together a range of partners from across Europe to design, develop and evaluate prototypes to define the current and future challenges of making organic user experiences." via EET India

Digital signage leading the way to a future 'Day Made of Glass' "More vivid, powerful glass substrates extend the scalability, usability and immersiveness of displays and blurs the physical and the virtual, he said. And new glass advances will create form-factor freedom that can drive application diversity and new user interfaces, making them even more intuitive and collaborative — "but we've still got far to go," he said. "Modern displays are still bricks and boxes," he said, referring to the form factors of smartphones/tablets and display screens. And because of this, the relationship between people and devices is backward, with people's environments and users' lifestyles dictated by the limitations of the device form factor, he said. People set up their living rooms to fit their TVs, and not the other way around, he said." via Digital Signage Today

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Thursday
Jan312013

Display Technology News Roundup 1.31.2013

Image via ExtremeTech

Add OLED screens to your fingernails with NailDisplay "It's only a prototype right now, but a group of engineers at the National Taiwan University in Taipei think that using fingernail-mounted OLED screens could solve a number of UI problems plaguing today's gadgets. For instance, if a person is typing on a touchscreen smartphone, the NailDisplay could show what virtual key your thumb is on (and obscuring), essentially making your typing experience a "transparent" one." via DVICE

Jaguar Land Rover engineer discusses HMI display technology "The key differentiator that is holding back displays in the automobile is that of the environment. The harshness and variety of environmental extremes means that standard consumer display's can't be used, therefore specific development projects need to take place. I expect that the increased resolution trend will eventually migrate across to cars, but this must not be done at the expense of performance and in particular brightness - which in a fixed position system is critical to ensure performance in all ambient lighting conditions, this is something that consumer devices are not particularly good at." via Display Alliance

Penetration rate of touch screen technology used in LCD monitors expected to increase in 2013 "The global penetration rate of touch screen technology used in LCD monitors is expected to increase to 8-10% in 2013 largely due to the release of Windows 8, according to sources at ViewSonic. The penetration rate is expected to reach the percentage by the end of the year after climbing from 3-5% in the first quarter 2013 largely due to LCD vendors' plans to continue releasing products that are Windows 8 compatible, said the sources." via DigiTimes

Flex-o-Fab: a new 3-year EU project that aims to help commercialize flexible OLEDs within six years "The Flex-o-Fab project will draw on technologies and expertise already used to produce glass-based OLEDs and flexible displays. It will look to migrate existing sheet-to-sheet processes to roll-to-roll (R2R) production to further reduce costs and enable high-volume production." via OLED-Info

Display database for engineers Search thousands of display panels by multiple characteristics and compare results side-by-side using the display database multisearch.

Sharp IGZO to Transform Displays "The cascading effect of these two advantages over A-Si are stunning, and Sharp is taking full advantage, as evidenced in the CES booth. The big advantage in mobile displays comes in power savings, as the larger aperture ratio allows for far fewer LED backlights to achieve the same brightness levels. But beyond the obvious power savings from fewer backlights, the high electron mobility from Sharp IGZO also allows the display panel to modulate the on/off state (at about 100 Hz) and still maintain the image on the screen, according to Chris Frank of the Sharp Camas Labs in Washington State." via Display Central

Today's thinner LCDs can show uneven lighting, even in bright scenes "LCD screens have often shown some backlight non-uniformity (called mura), because an LCD panel can let the backlight leak through more in certain spots than in others. Normally, this appears as an uneven cloudiness that usually can be seen only when the screen image is dark or completely black. But as TVs get ever thinner, we've seen a new problem that can cause even more noticeable type of non-uniformity, which, at its worst, can be distracting even in bright scenes." via ConsumerReports.org

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Reduce Display Noise In Capacitive Touchscreens "There are several options to reduce display noise effects on the touchscreen controller: shielding (eliminating noise magnitude), avoid noise frequency, digital filters, touchscreen sensor design, and synchronization." via Mobile Dev & Design

Car Makers Seize New Display Technology "Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz is torn on whether to implement the head-up display technology in its models. Its revamped E-Class sedan, which debuted at the Detroit auto show this week, is chock-full of new safety technologies such as a pedestrian-detection system, but doesn't include a heads-up display function. "There is still an internal debate [within Daimler] about it at the moment," said Joachim Schmidt, Daimler's global sales chief." via The Wall Street Journal

High res displays revolutionize user interfaces "In the past, UI designers had to think about what would look good on a display. Now these designers just need to figure out what looks good. This small shift in design mentality has unlocked the creativity of many on what a modern interface should look like, and we have only seen the start of it." via The Retriever Weekly

Kent Displays Listed As Manufacturer “Of Note” 2013 "A pioneer in the liquid crystal display industry, Kent Displays has transformed itself from a research-based organization into a business-to-consumer company. Its plastic LCDs, manufactured under the trade name Reflex, are used in a variety of applications in growing markets such as writing tablets, electronics skins and credit card displays. Among Kent Display’s products is a line of e-writers — the Boogie Board tablets — which were introduced in 2010 by Improv Electronics, Kent Displays’ consumer product subsidiary. In its first year in production, Boogie Board tablet sales exceeded forecast by 10 times because of their successful entry to the Chinese marketplace. By 2011, Boogie Boards were being sold in India. Today, the company is exploring other global markets for expansion. Learn more at www.kentdisplays.com." via Smart Business

E Ink accused of asset-stripping Hydis "The chief bone of contention for Hydis workers is the suspicion that E Ink is asset-stripping the company by selling its core technology — more specifically, the license for Hydis' LCD technology which is considered to be just a few notches below top display makers such LG Display — to rival companies. The act itself may be legitimate, but in that case, Bae insists that the government must initiate legislation to prevent such transfers of technology in the future. ...This would not be the first time that Hydis suffered at the hands of a foreign owner. Prior to E Ink's acquisition in 2008, the display maker — formerly a unit under Hyundai Electronics, the precursor to Hynix Semiconductor that was acquired by SK Group — had been exploited by China-based BOE Display." via The China Post

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“Moth’s Eye” Approach Will Reduce Screen Reflections and Glares "Moth Eye technology will be far more advanced than Apple’s Retina display, which develops screens based on the highest threshold of human sight that can distinguish between the pixels on a screen. While Steve Jobs touted Retina display technology as the maximum threshold of human sight, a recent rumor has it that Samsung Electronics will use diamond-shaped pixels in its soon-to-be Galaxy S4 instead of the usual Pentile-Matrix pixel display (while also producing a pixel density of 440ppi, or pixels per inch)." via The Droid Guy

Samsung hits OLED screen milestone "While it took Samsung four and a half years to reach the initial 100 million production mark for OLED panels, the next 100 million units were produced in just eleven months, and the last 100 million units were produced in only seven months. Samsung held a ceremony to commemorate the 300 million production milestone at Samsung Display City located in Asan city, Chungcheongnam-do, in South Korea, which was attended by its president and more than 300 other employees." via itbusiness.ca

Design Touchscreen-Based Handheld Systems For Low Power Consumption "Designers can stretch the operating battery life of handheld devices through judicious management of the operational states. Touchscreens, which are now nearly ubiquitous, make a good example. The operating conditions for a portable device, with the variety of applications it can support, generally can vary from intensely busy to nearly idle in a moment’s time. By utilizing knowledge of how a device is being used, the power consumed by the touchscreen can be more efficiently managed." via Electronic Design

Toray’s touchscreen film self-repairs scratches, cuts down on fingerprints "What Toray has done is manage to apply the anti-fingerprint solution to their self repairing film. So now you can have a fingerprint free touchscreen that also recovers from any minor scratches. Toray also updated the anti-fingerprint technology to make it easier to remove any dirt that does build up, however, in doing so the film doesn’t work quite as well as last year’s wrinkled nanometer surface method." via geek.com

Has Apple finally abandoned its sad claim to the 'Multi-Touch' trademark? "Apple's used "Multi-Touch" since literally the first minute Steve Jobs uttered the word, with a conspicuous pause between syllables and a handy slide behind him displaying the hyphenated form. The goal, as with any trademark, was to convince the public that "Multi-Touch" on Apple devices is a proprietary technology somehow distinct from all the other multitouch displays in the world. If you squint right and imagine you're a hotshot young attorney with a bad BMW habit, it sort of makes sense, in the same way that "E Ink" makes sense as a trademark. But it was always unfortunate: here's Apple, the leader in minimal design, allowing its lawyers to brutalize the perfectly functional word "multitouch" with two capital letters, a hyphen, and a superscript. Gross." via The Verge

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