E Ink introduces its new JustWrite digital paper film

E Ink Holdings introduced a new digital paper film, branded as JustWrite, which aims to bring writing functionality "on every surface".

E Ink JustWrite photo

JustWrite combines an E Ink display with touch functionality - without the use of a TFT backplane. EIH says that JustWrite features almost no latency in pen writing - and so it closely resembles writing on paper, natural surfaces or marker boards. The film is produced via a roll to roll process and requires only a writing stylus and simple electronics to enable functionality.E Ink can produce JustWrite films up to 3-feet in width.

EIH reports strong demand for electronic shelf label, e-reader and signage displays

E Ink Holding's president Johnson Lee says that EIH expects to enjoy strong sales in Q4 2018 - and the growth momentum will continue in 2019. The increased sales will be driven by strong demand for electronic shelf label (ESL) products. Q4 revenues are expected to be

EIH's current production capacity is fully booked - and even though the company is increasing its capacity at its Linkou Taiwan plant, this will not be enough to meet the surging demand. EIH is now considering converting some of its production capacity at its US plant to produce ESL displays (the fab is currently exclusively making e-reader displays).

E Ink and Fujitsu Semi to co-develop battery-less energy-harvesting e-paper label reference board design

E Ink Holdings announced a new collaboration with Fujitsu Semiconductor to co-develop a reference design board for battery-less e-paper labels. The new board will be based on Fujitsu's UHF FRAM RFID LSI. Toppan Printing will also be a partner in this project.

The design board will use energy-harvesting technologies that will enable it to connect over distances of up to 20 cm without a power source. The companies target applications such as badges, ID cards, electronic shelf labels and logistics tags.

E Ink Holdings says ESL and e-notebook display shipments growth will offset the expected decline in e-reader display shipments in 2018

E Ink Holdings estimates that its 2018 revenues will be little changed from its 2017 revenues (of about $495 million) as growth in ESL and e-notebook revenues will offset the decline in e-reader demand.

E Ink says that its e-reader customers are "adjusting their product portfolios to changing demand" in 2018 - which reduces demand for new devices and thus demand for its e-reader E Ink displays. Next year, however, e-reader market growth is expected to resume.

E Ink aims to start producing color ACeP displays in early 2019

E Ink Holdings says it plans to start producing its next-generation color e-Paper (Advanced Color ePaper, or ACeP) display panels early in 2019. The first ACeP displays will be 13" in size.

ACeP color E Ink at SID 2016

E Ink first-generation Triton color e-Paper displays never really reached commercialization as the performance was not good enough. The company currently produces 3-color displays (Spectra displays), but the ACeP will hopefully be the first commercial full color E Ink displays.

E Ink says shelf labels displays will outsell e-reader displays by area in 2018

E Ink Holdings' president, Johnson Lee, says that demand for electronic shelf labels (ESL) displays is high - and in 2018 the company expects ESL displays to surpass e-reader displays in terms of area shipments.

This is very good news for EIH as the e-reader market has stagnated for years - and it is rather surprising for many as we have all been used to consider e-readers to be the main market for e-paper displays.

E Ink Holdings reported an operating loss for Q1 2018

E Ink Holdings posted an operating loss of $8.8 million USD in Q1 2018, as it faces a slowdown in e-reader sales and as it increased its operating expenses by 14.3% (this includes the $30 million investment in SES-imageotag). E Ink says that this loss was in line with its expecations, as it knows e-reader vendors are now updating their models and shifting to larger screen sizes (larger than the current 6-inch models).

E Ink says it expects its results to improve in the current quarter, and it believes its 2018 results will be better than its 2017 results.

A tour of E Ink's booth at SID Displayweek

Here's a short video showing E Ink's booth at SID Displayweek 2018, where the company demonstrated its latest E Ink displays, devices and prototypes. Some of these displays looked very good, especially the new color panels!

E Ink had some very interesting displays in there - including the new medical patch developed with LTS, the high resolution (400 PPI and 600 PPI) E Ink developed together with JDI, a range of new writing pads (from Sony, ReMarkable and Onyx Boox), the GVIDO music stand display, plastic logic's OTFT-powered panels and E Ink's upcoming beautiful color e-paper displays.

E Ink invests 26 million Euro in digital price tags developer SES-imageotag

E Ink Holdings announced a strategic collaboration with SES-imagotag, a developer of digital price tags. As part of this collaboration, E Ink invested 26 million Euro in SES, as it aims to expand its presence int he retail IoT market.

E Ink and SES-imagotag have collaborated for years, and implemented E Ink's Tri-color Spectra displays into shelf labels. This new industrial and sales partnership aims to accelerate broader adoption of electronic paper in smart retail applications.