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Old 03-02-2005, 11:30 PM   #1
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Sharp prototypes color e-book reader

This story travelled from a Japanese business site (dead link) to SorobanGeeks and then to Gizmodo where I actually found it:

Sharp has shown a prototype eBook reader with a screen that is only 1mm thick — inside the transparent plastic case that is obviously much thicker. Although they don’t plan to have the technology in saleable form until 2007, they already have one major leg up on Sony (and I’m not just talking about the color screen); since eBooks have already been a major part of Sharp’s Zaurus campaign, their library already has around 7000 titles, compared to Sony’s meager 100 or so.

Who knows, if the recent stories on the demise of the PDA are true (I really don't want to hear about it anymore), a color e-book reader will be exactly what we need in 2007 (you'll never find me reading e-books on smartphone devices with current screen sizes!).
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Old 03-02-2005, 11:47 PM   #2
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What the heck is the technology underlying this thing? I didn't think that e-ink could work in color yet. I can't manage to get any larger picture than the posted one. Does anyone have more info?
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Old 03-02-2005, 11:56 PM   #3
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I also don't think Sharp is working together with E-Ink, so it must be something else. I tried to Google more on the subject, but couldn't find more.
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Old 03-03-2005, 12:18 AM   #4
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The future is looking bright for this sort of device... if only it will read multiple formats.

But still, 2 years is a _long_ time in this area, so who knows what the ebook scene might be like then???

Craig.
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:03 PM   #5
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Well, its been 2.5 years and the latest and greatest crop of screens are still B&W (now with slightly better contrast).

So, what are the current bets on color E-Ink at the consumer level?
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:09 PM   #6
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Well, its been 2.5 years and the latest and greatest crop of screens are still B&W (now with slightly better contrast).

So, what are the current bets on color E-Ink at the consumer level?
3-5 years to the massmarket. rollable and videocapable
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:22 PM   #7
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3-5 years to the massmarket. rollable and videocapable
That's moving the bar, that's not fair!

What about a color devices with todays form factors and performance?
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:51 PM   #8
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That's moving the bar, that's not fair!

What about a color devices with todays form factors and performance?
Not gonna happen i think, just too expensive as of now. And since development in speed, flexibility and color are progessing in parallel, it would be nonsense to get something out now.
I have seen a first generation color prototype, and it looks very promising, but the resolution is not yet product ready.
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Old 09-20-2007, 04:48 AM   #9
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Trouble is, of course, that colour screens have inherently only 1/3 the resolution of B&W screens. The current crop of B&W screens have resolutions of 166dpi - a colour screen would need a resolution of 500dpi to be equally sharp in appearance.
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Old 09-20-2007, 06:08 AM   #10
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Trouble is, of course, that colour screens have inherently only 1/3 the resolution of B&W screens. The current crop of B&W screens have resolutions of 166dpi - a colour screen would need a resolution of 500dpi to be equally sharp in appearance.
I don't understand that one Harry - could you explain?
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Old 09-20-2007, 07:56 AM   #11
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A colour screen needs a red, a green, and a blue pixel to form one coloured "dot" on the image.
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:07 AM   #12
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A colour screen needs a red, a green, and a blue pixel to form one coloured "dot" on the image.
I don't think it's as simple as that:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subpixel_rendering
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:53 AM   #13
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That's certainly the way it works with CRT displays. I don't know if eInk is different in that respect.
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:17 AM   #14
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That's certainly the way it works with CRT displays. I don't know if eInk is different in that respect.
Yes I realised that the article in wikipedia is a about LCD screens and eInk could very well be different.

It's worth bearing in mind also that pixel resolution isn't the end of the story, anti-aliasing has an important role in the overall readability of text on a screen.
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:29 AM   #15
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I don't think it's as simple as that:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subpixel_rendering
Yes, but sub-pixel font rendering is really just a way of fudging things. I remember Microsoft making a big deal about it when they first released MSReader. It doesn't really increase the DPI, it just lets you use part of a dot. Ceteris paribus, the DPI would be cut to one-third of its original by switching to color, so SPFR would simply get you part of the way back to the B/W version.

I assume, however, that color versions will bring smaller, closer ink bubble thingies and a corresponding increase in pixel density.
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