TDK maker of many amazing things has just announced the beginning of production of the first transparent screen for mobile phones. Designated the lyrical name UEL476 TDK has opened the see through doors to the future.
Built using Organic Electroluminescence – O-EL -materials, which are very similar to the organic compounds found in firefly’s. With an O-EL display a slight electrical charge is used to light up the organic compund that makes up each pixel or dot on the display. Unlike an LCD display the TDK small screen doesn’t require a back light, the organic compound itself emits the light. Sitting behind each LCD panel is a flurescent or LED light source that is coloured by the LCD panel as light passes through. This type of display would be very difficult to turn into a transparent display. The O-EL or OLED displays on the other hand are perfect for this.
The new displays specifications include:
- Passive Matrix O-El display
- QVGA color 320 × 240 pixel grid
- achieving high brightness (150cd/m2)
- Transmittance of 40%
- constructed so that the display contents cannot easily be seen from behind, to protect the user’s privacy
With the see through disply hopefully we will see a reduction in texting-while walking accidents. In recent years in New York a whole streets worth of light poles were wrapped in padding to stop these kinds of accidents. With transparent displays these kinds of injuries might have been avoided.
All displays produced by TDK use passive circuit design, passive designs are much cheaper to produce as they require less transistors to control the display but generally the picture is a little better on the acive matrix displays. This will not be a high end smartphone display, partially indicated by the fact that it’s a passive-matrix, instead it will give the bread and butter mobile phones a little zing. It will be that extra bit of whiz-bang to differentiate a phone in a crowded market.
So a new revolution in displays begins, the transparent display. Will we see them used in shops as info displays that seem to float and blend into the background, will they be built onto the inside surface of sunglasses to create the ultimate heads up display. This small step by TDK, is the first small step towards the furture, it will help us look at displays differently – right through them apparently -.
More information at TDK’s Press Release
Buddha’s Brother out…