Sony shows a color E Ink FUS Watch prototype

Sony's FES Watch (and the 2nd-Gen FES Watch U) is covered with a flexible E Ink display so you can change the design of the watch and the write-band at will. At CES 2017 Sony is showing a next-generation FES Watch prototype that uses a color E Ink display as you can see below

Sony color FES prototype, CES-2017

Sony's new FES color Watch is just a prototype at this stage, the company did not reveal any commercialization plans yet...

E Ink and Toppan Printing developed a 32" color flexible e-paper display

E Ink, in collaboration with TOppan Printing, developed a 32" flexible color E Ink display. The companies presented a first prototype, and the plan is to produce this display by the end of 2017.

32'' flexible E Ink prototype (E Ink and Toppan Printing)

This is the largest color flexible E Ink ever developed. We already saw flexible 32" Mobius E Ink panels, but these were black and white. This display uses color-filters produced by Toppan. The display is 0.4 mm thick and it can be curved (it is not truly flexible by the end user). The companies say that this new display offer a higher color gamut compared to previous color E Ink displays.

Singapore installs 11 color E Ink bus stop information boards

Singapore’s Land Transport Authority installed new public transportation information boards at 11 bus stops across the city. The boards are based on color 31.2" E Ink displays with LED front light. The system design and integration was performed by Visionect.

Singapore public transport color E Ink display

This pilot project chose an ePaper solution because it is extremely energy efficient and runs on solar cells, completely independently from the electrical grid. If the project proves to be successful, this may lead to wider adoption on up to 200 bus stops in the next few years.

E Ink demonstrate new color and flexible e-Paper panels at SID 2016

E Ink had a very interesting booth at SID 2016, showcasing its new color e-paper displays, and also other new and existing displays and prototypes.

First up, we have E Ink's new Advanced Color ePaper (ACeP), which is a high-quality full-color E Ink display. ACeP enables rich-color displays, which is enabled by colored pigments and not color-filters like in E Ink's older color displays.

Dai Nippon Printing and E ink to co-develop E Ink based products

Dai Nippon Printing (DNP) announced a strategic partnership with E Ink to co-develop and co-market products that use E Ink displays. DNP will use its strong sales network in Japan to market new products targeted at the marketing and sales promotion segment of the retail market, and the security card and smartcard business for the financial and transportation market segments.

DNP and E Ink booth at RetailTech Japan 2016

E Ink will provide e-paper displays and engineering support to DNP. The two companies will focus on two product types. The first will incorporating E Ink Prism color changing film into retail promotion displays used by retailers for new product launches, in-store promotions and numerous marketing and merchandising activities. 

New technologies uses phase-change materials to create efficient and bright e-paper displays

Oxford University researchers developed new technology based on phase-change materials (similar to ones used in re-writable DVDs) that can be used to create non-volatile highly-efficient e-paper displays. Oxford established a new company called Bodle Technologies to commercialize this new technology.

Bodle Technologies phase-change display mechanism

The phase-change materials can manipulate light - by electrical, optical or mechanical means - they can be used to filter, steer or dim light using very little power. Bodle already demonstrated a sub-100nm pixel size and a very rich color gamut (they say it exceeds "other display technologies"). David Fyfe (the executive chairman of Oxford Photovoltaics and the former CEO of Cambridge Display Technology) will serve as executive chairman.

E Ink launches a new Spectra Yellow ePaper display

Two years ago, E Ink announced the Spectra e-paper panels that feature three pigments - black, white and red. Today the company announced an expansion of that product line to include the Spectra Yellow, which can show black, white or yellow colors.

The Spectra panels are aimed for electronic shelf label (ESL) retail applications. E Ink says that red and yellow are two of the most widely used colors relevant to in-store displays and signage. Spectra panels support both active-matrix and segmented format displays.

Pebble raises over $8 million towards the color e-paper watch

Pebble Technology, the company behind the successful Pebble smartwatch, is now developing a new version called Pebble Time - that sports a color e-paper display. The company launched a kickstarter campaign with an aim to raise $500,000. It took them one hour to raise $1 million, and a few days later they already passed $8 million in funding.

The Pebble time uses a "color e-paper display" The original pebble used a 1.26" (144x168) monochrome memory LCD (transflective LCD made by Sharp). It's not clear what kind of displays will be used in the new Pebble, but as far as I know sharp do not produce a color memory LCD.

Amazon to buy Samsung's electrowetting display unit (Liquavista)?

According to Bloomberg, Samsung wants to sell its electrowetting display unit LiquaVista which they bought back in January 2011. They are currently in talks with Amazon, that will pay a sub-$100 million sum to Samsung for the unit. According to the report, a Samsung spokesperson admitted that the Liquavista acquisition "didn't meet its expectations".

I believe Amazon does want to bring new life into its Kindle e-reader line, and LiquaVista's display can enable color e-paper displays with a fast refresh rate compared to E Ink. On the other hand the technology is much less mature and I'm not sure if Amazon is the sort of company to actually succeed in commercializing such a technology. This one is going to be interesting to watch...

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