E Ink Says Color Displays on the Way (Yet Again) This Time With Touchscreens


E Ink Touch, Color

There’s an article over at Digitimes about E Ink, the company behind the display technology used in most ebook readers today, sampling out two new color touchscreen electrophoretic displays to their vendors.

One of the new displays uses a capacitive touchscreen similar to those used on some cellphones and the Apple iPad, and the other uses an electromagnetic sensor like the Wacom touchscreens that requires the use of a stylus pen to detect input.

While E Ink has been mentioning color epaper for years (there are videos on YouTube dating back 3 years showing E Ink’s color technology), we have yet to see it used on anything but various prototypes. But according to the article, we could see an ereader using one of these new displays by the end of this year (don’t hold your breath). Here’s a quote:

As for color EPD, China-based vendor Hanvon has adopted its color EPD and is scheduled to launch e-book readers using the color EPD in the fourth quarter, Liu said. The e-book reader panel adopts E Ink’s latest Pearl EPD with color filter (CF), and it will have better response time and reflection, Liu explained, adding that E Ink expects color e-book readers to account for 10% of the global e-book reader market in 2011.

Hanvon is the major supplier of ebook readers in China; their devices can be found under the same brand name and other brand names in the US and Euorpe as well. Back at CES, Hanvon unveiled a new line of ebook readers that were supposed to be released to the US market, but so far that hasn’t happened yet, so who knows if we will really see a color E Ink display anytime soon.

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