Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book General > News

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-11-2010, 02:18 AM   #1
anurag
Addict
anurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura aboutanurag has a spectacular aura about
 
Posts: 236
Karma: 4066
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: California
Device: Kindle 1 and DX, iPhone
Post Liquavista: Threat to E-Ink?

Note: A few days ago Nate asked me if I would be interested in becoming a staff writer for MobileRead. I gladly agreed, and this is my first post in this role.


Barely ten days into January, 2010 is already being hailed as the year of the ereader. However, recent developments indicate that 2010 could be the beginning of the end for dedicated ereaders as new multi-function devices become the ereading devices of choice for consumers. Even as the Apple Tablet looms over the horizon, companies like Pixel Qi and Qualcomm hope to antiquate e-ink based devices with new display technologies that offer full color, video-capable refresh rates and enhanced indoor and outdoor viewability while still consuming far less power than traditional LCD screens.

Another such company is Liquavista, a 2006 spin-out from Philips Research Labs in Eindhoven, Netherlands. The key to Liquavista’s display technology is electrowetting, a technique that uses electric fields to change how solid surfaces interact with liquids. Liquavista’s electrowetting displays consist of a layer of colored oil between a layer of water and a solid water-repelling surface. In this stable state, the layer of oil is visible to the viewer through the water. When a charge is applied, the layer of oil changes its shape, exposing the solid surface below and changing the perceived color of the 3-layered surface. Such manipulations are performed at the level of tiny pixels to create a full-color screen. The power consumption of Liquavista’s display technique remains low because the stable state requires a low constant charge and the solid surface below the layer of oil can be made reflective to maintain screen brightness without the need for a backlight like in LCD screens. Most importantly, the electric transformations that manipulate the layer of oil can be applied several hundred times a second, giving the technology the ability to render video.

In October 2009 Liquavista demonstrated a 6-inch device running video on a monochrome display with 64 shades of gray (compared to the Kindle’s 16). The official name of the monochrome technology is LiquavistaBright:


At CES this year, Liquavista displayed the color version of LiquavistaBright. The demo below compares a contemporary e-ink screen with LiquavistaColor technology.


At CES Liquavista also demonstrated a concept device called the LiquavistaPebble (video below), but few specifics were released beyond the description of the curved shape of the device.


While Liquavista’s technology sounds promising, the biggest challenge for the company isn’t technical. Pixel Qi has already announced a partnership with Notion Ink to bring a color e-reader to market this summer, and there have been strong rumors about the next Kindle using Qualcomm’s Mirasol color display. So far Liquavista have only announced a partnership with chip-maker Texas Instruments, who plan to use Liquavista in their ‘next-generation e-reader development platform’. There are reports that Liquavista-based devices will not be available before the first quarter of 2011, by when Pixel Qi and Qualcomm’s Mirasol may have made significant inroads into the ereading market.

E-ink based displays have played an important role in creating the current market for ereaders and continue to dominate the market as the screen technology of choice in e-readers from Amazon, Sony and Barnes & Noble. But e-ink (and dedicated e-reading products) might be forced into oblivion as new multi-function devices offer more bang for the consumers’ buck. Sri Peruvemba, vice president of marketing at E Ink, is still not convinced. “If I give one of these devices to my daughter and I know she’s going to make phone calls on it and surf the Internet on it, I’m not going to be motivated to buy it for her”.

If the lack of features like video and voice continues to be E Ink’s unique selling proposition, display innovators like Liquavista might have much to cheer about this year.



Thanks to CleverClothe for pointing out an error in the story's description of Liquavista's power management techniques.

Last edited by anurag; 01-11-2010 at 05:46 PM.
anurag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 04:40 AM   #2
Pardoz
Which side are you on?
Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.Pardoz once ate a cherry pie in a record 7 seconds.
 
Posts: 370
Karma: 1964
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Variable, currently Czestochowa, Poland.
Device: Kindle 2 Int'l
Quote:
Originally Posted by anurag View Post
But e-ink (and dedicated e-reading products) might be forced into oblivion as new multi-function devices offer more bang for the consumers’ buck.
Would this be in much the same way that GPS/map consoles, mp3 players, game consoles, cellphones, and digital cameras have been forced into oblivion?

Multi-function devices definitely have a market share (although it is significantly smaller than their piece of geek mindshare) but until they can offer an equivalent (or superior) reading experience for an equivalent (or lower) price, I'll be sticking with dedicated e-readers rather than joining the 'Ein Volk! Ein Reich! Ein iSlate!' parade.

That said, platform is really pretty much irrelevant - more people buying ebooks will hopefully translate into more, and better, ebooks becoming available, and then we all win. Regardless of what device(s) we choose to do our reading on.
Pardoz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 05:04 AM   #3
LDBoblo
Wizard
LDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcover
 
Posts: 1,386
Karma: 16056
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Asia
Device: Kindle 3 WiFi, Sony PRS-505
I'd love to have a dedicated ebook reader with a Liquavista screen. I have absolutely no need for video, but I do have a need to view things quickly, which present electrophoretic screens like E-Ink cannot do. There are many potential benefits of a high-rate-capable display that do not amount to video playback.

E-Ink's current manifestation probably deserves to be obsolesced with things that perform more quickly and with better viewing quality. However, one should not assume E-Ink to be equal to dedicated devices, unless E-Ink were significantly cheaper than competing e-paper technologies, which I don't expect to be the case.

For competent video playback, there's more than simply a screen to be concerned with, and cumulative hardware and software costs could be a factor in device price. If such is the case, then dedicated readers with superior screens should still be able to replace E-Ink devices assuming prices are kept similar (or lower).
LDBoblo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 09:04 AM   #4
skyline
Enthusiast
skyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 35
Karma: 504
Join Date: Dec 2009
Device: none
Take a look at what they think at gizmodo and engadget. Maybe e-ink is in big trouble after all. Liquivista, Pixel QI and mirasol salute you.

Last edited by skyline; 01-11-2010 at 09:06 AM.
skyline is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 09:59 AM   #5
LDBoblo
Wizard
LDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcover
 
Posts: 1,386
Karma: 16056
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Asia
Device: Kindle 3 WiFi, Sony PRS-505
Quote:
Originally Posted by skyline View Post
Take a look at what they think at gizmodo and engadget. Maybe e-ink is in big trouble after all. Liquivista, Pixel QI and mirasol salute you.
Probably should be said that Pixel Qi is not promoted as an ultra-low-power solution. It's a slightly different kind of beast that takes quite a bit more power than most e-paper display options. It will certainly be a battery saver relative to the full-backlight option, and it will be very versatile kind of medium for multiple functions in different lighting conditions, but it's not really meant to be clustered in with ultra-low power reflective e-papers.
LDBoblo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:01 AM   #6
Kali Yuga
Professional Contrarian
Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Kali Yuga ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Kali Yuga's Avatar
 
Posts: 2,045
Karma: 3289631
Join Date: Mar 2009
Device: Kindle 4 No Touchie
As with all the new screen techs, it's fairly easy to promise the moon -- or even build a decent prototype -- and much harder to ramp up to actual production, in the time frame promised, and at a good price point. Hopefully it will work out, but it's way too early to say.

Otherwise, the "zomg multifunction must win" has kinda gotten beaten to death lately on these boards.
Kali Yuga is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:08 AM   #7
Archergal5219
Semi-retired semi-hero
Archergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-booksArchergal5219 has learned how to read e-books
 
Archergal5219's Avatar
 
Posts: 64
Karma: 768
Join Date: Aug 2007
Device: Palm Zire71, EEE PC901, Sony PRS-505
I never really thought e-ink was a great solution for readers. About all it really has going for it is low battery consumption. Some folks really like the print quality, but I find it slow and low-contrast-y and.

That's why I really like reading on my old Palm device or netbook. Sometimes I really like to change background/type colors. And page turns are so fast I don't always see them.

I ALWAYS see the page turns on my Sony.
Archergal5219 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:12 AM   #8
Ralph Sir Edward
Gentleman & Cynic
Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ralph Sir Edward ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Ralph Sir Edward's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,583
Karma: 13140134
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: 5 generation native Texan
Device: BeBook/Openinkpot, CYbook 3rd gen awaiting RTF software upgrade
I expect one of these new techs to make it out of the gate in a year or two. It will end up replacing e-ink over time. It'll sell on e-book readers simply because of page turn speeds, if nothing else...
Ralph Sir Edward is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:28 AM   #9
skyline
Enthusiast
skyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 35
Karma: 504
Join Date: Dec 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDBoblo View Post
Probably should be said that Pixel Qi is not promoted as an ultra-low-power solution. It's a slightly different kind of beast that takes quite a bit more power than most e-paper display options. It will certainly be a battery saver relative to the full-backlight option, and it will be very versatile kind of medium for multiple functions in different lighting conditions, but it's not really meant to be clustered in with ultra-low power reflective e-papers.
True, Mary Lou Jepsen says it will save 80 per cent of the consumption with the back light off which I guess should be enough for someone to read all day long, from dawn till dusk. Most people don't really need anything more than that, you can let it recharge while you' re asleep.

Last edited by skyline; 01-11-2010 at 10:31 AM.
skyline is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:32 AM   #10
Mitch G
Connoisseur
Mitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enoughMitch G will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 54
Karma: 742
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Naperville, IL USA
Device: kindle
Quote:
Originally Posted by skyline View Post
... which should be enough for someone to read all day long, from dawn till dusk. Most people don't really need anything more than that, you can let it recharge while you' re asleep.
Agreed - especially if I have wireless charging mat on my night stand.
I read in bed; I put the book down because I'm nodding off; it's fully charged the next morning.

I guess the good news is that an e-ink device won't suddenly be useless because there are color displays available. I'll just have to give it to my mom or something.


Mitch
Mitch G is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:38 AM   #11
LDBoblo
Wizard
LDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcover
 
Posts: 1,386
Karma: 16056
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Asia
Device: Kindle 3 WiFi, Sony PRS-505
Quote:
Originally Posted by skyline View Post
True, Mary Lou Jepsen says it will save 80 per cent of the consumption with the back light off which should be enough for someone to read all day long, from dawn till dusk. Most people don't really need anything more than that, you can let it recharge while you' re asleep.
Yep, 80 percent of the display power. And yes it may allow all-day power on something with, say, a big netbook battery. That's quite a different beast than the pathetic little batteries they cram into ebook reader devices.

Just for a quick example...if you have a netbook with a power consumption of, say, 8 watts altogether including 2.5 watts for the screen, and then stuff in a Pixel Qi display and run without the backlight, you'll be saving about 2 watts, or 25% total device power consumption. That's a pretty conservative estimate too for a netbook, IIRC.

Last edited by LDBoblo; 01-11-2010 at 10:48 AM.
LDBoblo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:51 AM   #12
skyline
Enthusiast
skyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 35
Karma: 504
Join Date: Dec 2009
Device: none
tablets are going to compete with e-ink readers not netbooks.
skyline is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 10:55 AM   #13
LDBoblo
Wizard
LDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcoverLDBoblo exercises by bench pressing the entire Harry Potter series in hardcover
 
Posts: 1,386
Karma: 16056
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Asia
Device: Kindle 3 WiFi, Sony PRS-505
Quote:
Originally Posted by skyline View Post
tablets are going to compete with e-ink readers not netbooks.
Tablet power consumption will not be significantly different. One of the convenient "cheats" of e-ink devices was that the screens were so slow that it was safe and economically wise to put significantly underpowered processors behind them. However, even with those processors, the most optimistic projections for Pixel Qi power consumption (they hope to reach 100 milliwatts draw) will still be more double the consumption of even jetBook's LCD. Currently it's more than ten times that in reflective mode, if I recall.

Last edited by LDBoblo; 01-11-2010 at 11:29 AM.
LDBoblo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 11:01 AM   #14
skyline
Enthusiast
skyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 35
Karma: 504
Join Date: Dec 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDBoblo View Post
Tablet power consumption will not be significantly different.
first of all that was your 666th post which is cool, and secondly a typical seven inch tablet runs on a low power processor, usually ARM, and the main consumption drain comes from the screen. Please feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

Last edited by skyline; 01-11-2010 at 11:17 AM.
skyline is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-2010, 11:11 AM   #15
skyline
Enthusiast
skyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enoughskyline will become famous soon enough
 
Posts: 35
Karma: 504
Join Date: Dec 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDBoblo View Post
the most optimistic projections for Pixel Qi power consumption (they hope to reach 100 milliwatts draw) will still be about double the consumption of jetBook's LCD. Currently it's more than ten times that in reflective mode, if I recall.
According to Mary Lou Jepsen 5 times that in reflective mode on a netbook screen. Smaller size tablet screens will consume less, I guess!
skyline is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
liquavista

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What is the greatest threat to the publishing industry (mark II)? JSWolf News 19 08-15-2009 02:52 PM
What is the greatest threat to the publishing industry? ficbot News 51 08-11-2009 11:03 PM
LIQUAVISTA:The first products to use Liquavista displays will be the next generation Jason News 9 05-30-2009 06:25 AM
Amazon Kindle - a threat to our First Amendment rights? Alexander Turcic Amazon Kindle 37 01-31-2008 10:41 AM
At Last: *Front-Lit* E-Ink, Flexible E-Ink and ... E-Ink Watches! NatCh News 1 10-27-2007 10:50 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:03 PM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.