Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Qualcomm's 2010-2011 color e-reader

Slash Gear's Chris Davies reports on Qualcomm's mirasol team, which is "now showing off a 5.7-inch display capable of full color and video playback, with minimal impact on battery life. They’ve set themselves the target of having color ebook readers with mirasol panels on the market by the latter part of 2010, and are working with OEMs now to achieve that."
This technology uses
'...tiny flexible membranes that react to electrical charges, overlaid onto a mirrored surface.  Light reflected back out through those membranes is refracted so that interfering wavelengths create colors, and because the membranes used are bistable, once they have been set to display a certain color they require virtually no power to maintain it, only if it needs to be changed.  The system also needs no color filters, no strong backlighting to be visible in direct sunlight and no polarizing lenses.

They point out that what we see is an overall, non-functioning mockup except that the display panel is an actual, working unit and that they are working with unnamed OEMs on a variety of e-reader devices.  The cost is on a par with the cost of current e-reader devices.  Battery life is said to be terrific and readability very good in normal light but best in bright lighting.  Qualcomm promises an "e-reader with color and video but no battery sacrifice."

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