Sunday, July 17, 2005

Fujitsu demonstrates colour e-paper

News from the digital paper front. Last year Philips showed its digital paper. It was impressive as it was usable for reading in the sun. A handicap was the black and white representation, no colours yet; it was neither bendable, yet. Philips developed this digital paper together with E-Ink. (pictures; long version (2.26 min.); short version (1.25 min.).

Fujitsu has also been working on e-paper for some time. But now this Japanese company has surprised the market with bendable paper and colour presentation. But looking at the competitive side: Philips has already developed a factory production; Fujitsu is still in a laboratory phase

Fujitsu showed at the Fujitsu Forum 2005 on July 14 and 15 at Tokyo International Forum the film substrate-based bendable colour electronic paper featuring image memory function. The new electronic paper features vivid colour images that are unaffected even when the screen is bent, and features an image memory function that enables continuous display of the same image without the need for electricity. The thin and flexible electronic paper uses very low power to change screen images, thereby making it ideal for displaying information or advertisements in public areas as a type of new electronic media that can be handled as easily as paper.

e-Paper of Fujitsu, bendable film and colour presentation (copyright Fujitsu)

To me digital paper will be a break through in usability. It will be used for screens on televisions, PCs, PDAs as well as smart phones. Readeability will improve a lot, at last (think of just reading a PDA in sunlight; it will be a real advantage over the present film screens). For long it was also portrayed as a new carrier for electronic books and newspapers. For paper I see chances, but I have doubts about e-books. Having seen Sony put in digital paper in a Japanese version of the Librie and using the conventional business model, I am not convinced e-books (hardware and a file) will be a single-purpose, independent information carrier. I believe that I will download e-books just as songs on my smart phone. But by 2015 we might read the newspaper on digital paper, but without videos. Tank your news in the morning from your wireless connection!

The book E-Content - Technologies and Perspectives for the European Market edited by P.A. Bruck; A. Buchholz; Z. Karssen; A. Zerfass addresses the question how content industries change within a digital environment and what role information and communication technologies play in transforming the competitive landscape. Order through Springer Online.

No comments: