Refresh rate News
Researchers from the Novel Devices Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati developed a new e-paper technology based on plastic sheets coated with aluminum with pores that hide black ink behind them. To show a black pixel, the display pushes the ink through the pore and onto the front of the sheet.
The research already developed a first prototype - a 6" round display that features 150 ppi. The refresh rate is very fast - about 67 times a second. It has a very bright white background - due to the aluminum coating.
When Amazon announced their new Kindle Paperwhite, they wouldn't say what kind of E Ink panel is used - just that it's got a higher resolution (XGA), better contrast, better touch capabilities and a faster refresh rate. Our friend Sriram Peruvemba, E Ink's marketing chief explains that the major advances in this new display is a better TFT and improved software.
The new TFT backplane allows them to achieve a higher resolution - 212 dpi (XGA), compared to the older generation TFT which allowed only 167 dpi (SVGA). The new software design also allows for faster refresh. Now grey-to-grey speed is 450 mSecs, compared to 600 mSecs using the older software (i.e. 25% faster).
Bookeen has been researching high speed E Ink displays for over two years, and now they have unveiled the technology - which they call High Speed Ink System technology or (HSIS). Basically, HSIS is an E Ink Pearl touch display, a TI Cortex A8 processor (which Bookeen said was developed in partnership with TI) and optimized software and algorithms developed by Bookeen.
Bookeen recently announced the Odyssey e-reader that includes all HSIS components - and is capable of fast page refreshes, video, scrollable menus and scrollable web-browser and more - all this on a monochrome 6" E Ink pearl display of course. Bookeen has been showing prototype HSIS devices since early 2011.
Here's a nice short video showing a 6" E Ink Pearl panel running on the Freescale i.MX50 EVK, showing the quick refresh rate possible with such a setup:
Fujitsu is showing a new color e-paper eReader prototype - with a 4096 colors, 8" display (157 PPI that offers 8:1 contrast ratio. This is a linux-based system with a new fast processor (refresh rate of 0.7 seconds) and ePub and PDF support. It weights only 220 grams.
This new prototype probably uses Fujitsu's "improved" e-paper technology announced back in May 2010.
It's been a while since we heard some news regarding AUO's Sipix e-paper technology. IRX Innovation tested the new panel and found it's fast enough for video (6fps):
In fact IRX engineers say that this could be improved to 10fps just by loading the images into a memory buffer. The panel on show offers VGA resolution (480x640), 100Hz refresh rate and 4 gray levels (although this will be improved to 16 levels). Here's a closeup of the panel: