During CES 2013, Samsung showcased their invention called Yuom. It is a flexible mobile device that very well could come to change how our mobile devices are designed in the near future. Even though the device incorporates some impressive technology, it’s still not as impressive as e-paper could become. Its properties far exceed our wildest dreams, but so far it has only been accomplished in black and white, not full color, which is a shame really.
As with everything, that is being worked on right now. As a matter of fact, Ricoh recently announced and demonstrated their research and development of a full color e-paper display. It might not be too fast, but it shows some rather impressive progress when it comes to e-paper design. No longer will we need to gaze upon black and white news in our e-paper newspaper, quite the contrary. This new groundbreaking technology is going to fundamentally change how we acquire our news and read it.
The impressive specs this 3.5-inch prototype demonstrates with its QVGA display and pixel density of 113.6 ppi is mind-boggling when you think about how recently e-paper was invented. Its reflectivity is 70%. Compared with current color-filter displays, this e-paper is 2.5 times brighter. It has a color reproduction range of 35% higher than that of a newspaper, which is 31% in Japan. What we can derive from this is that e-paper newspapers will definitely be a whole lot sharper, more vibrant and more content dynamic with its full color displays than any newspaper before it.
Ricoh explains the technology behind their full color e-paper display by revealing that the material used for the chromic layers is transparent in its oxidized state, but becomes colored when it’s reduced. It is an interesting fact which could come to change the look and feel of newspapers quite distinctly in the future. As Ricoh makes further progress with their full color e-paper display, we’d probably expect far larger version of this new technology. As a matter of fact, Ricoh announced that they would like to increase the size to 6 inches, then 10 inches. They also want to work on achieving stable driving and faster response, which is something that is a necessity in today’s fast paced mobile device climate. There is no mention about when this new technology will be put in a commercial device. I guess we’ll have to wait for a more perfected version before we’ll see full-size newspapers being commercially introduced.