updated 10:40 am EDT, Mon May 19, 2008
AUO Curved LCDs and Touch
AU Optronics today at the SID Display expo showcased a number of advances it believes should advance LCDs for handhelds. The highlight is the world's first curved LCD, according to the company: a new thinning technique allows the company to produce a screen with a 100mm (3.9in) radius that not only arcs but which has even backlighting across the entire display. The invention could mean a generation of devices with LCDs where they were previously difficult or impractical, such as wristwatches or instrumentation built directly in-dash for cars. AUO doesn't say when it expects the technology to reach shipping products.
Touchscreens are also being revised at the expo, the company says. A new coating dubbed simply Grease Free and Touch Mura Free promises to reduce the dirtying effect created by repeated use of touchscreen displays and nearly eliminates fingerprints; it also makes oil from hands easier to wipe clean and prevents users from gradually creating an uneven surface after repeated pressure to the screen. AUO is demonstrating the technology with a custom-developed 2.4-inch LCD but notes that the technology should apply soon to other screens.
Two new multi-touch LCDs at 4.3 and 8 inches are also poised to bring in-cell touch to handheld displays, the company says. Like most in-cell designs, the implementation weaves the touch sensors into the LCD itself, allowing designers to use just one layer. AUO's version also provides strong color accuracy and brightness in sunlight. Mass production starts before the end of June for the 4.3-inch edition.