Samsung today announces three new LCD displays as part of its 70 Series family, the P2070, P3270, and P2370HD. The first two rock a 30mm (1.18-inch) slim form factor, while the HD model checks in a little thicker at 65.5mm (2.58 inches.).
"The 70 Series offers our customers a sophisticated-looking LCD monitor with the performance capability of our televisions," said J.H. Kim, President of Samsung Electronics America's Information Technology Division. "The 70 Series is the new standard as more people upgrade their monitors for additional uses, like watching television programs and playing video games."
Power users will be most interested in the P2370HD, which boasts full 1080p HD (1920x1080) and comes with a built-in HDTV tuner, integrated speakers with SRS TruSurround, and a remote control. Other specs include a 5ms GTG response time, 50,000:1 contrast ration, and HDMI and component inputs.
There's no escaping it - expect to see lots of buzz, hype, new products, and media coverage revolving around the recent push towards 3D. But what you may be able to avoid is having to wear goofy looking glasses as 3D becomes more commonplace, thanks to a new display technology NEC plans to introduce next year.
The technology manipulates the way light moves in each LCD pixel in such a way that the left and right eye will always see a different image without the aid of 3D glasses. NEC already plans to produce several new displays based on the new technology, starting with a 12.1-inch model. Smaller screens are also being planned for portable use, all of which promise to offer similar resolution to a standard 2D LCD monitor.
Outside of gaming and movies, NEC says its technology will benefit those in the medical and industrial design fields. One of the main selling points will be the lack of headaches and eye strain typically associated with current 3D technology.
Ultra-thins are proving to be ultra-popular, or at least more popular than panel makers might have anticipated. As a result, Acer's new Timeline ultra-thin notebook product line will see a short delay due to a panel shortage, Acer chairman JT Wang said.
Not wasting any time, Wang also indicated the company has already found a new panel supplier, which it anticipates will solve the shortage problem. Delays will be limited to just three of the ten new models being released, but Acer says it won't have a significant affect on shipment volumes, as it only expects to fall behind schedule by about eight days.
The Timeline ultraportabe range includes 13.3, 14.1, and 15.6-inch models built around Intel's Core 2 Duo ultra low voltage (ULV) SU9400 processor or Core 2 Solo ULV SU3500 processor. Other specs include up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM, up to 320GB HDD, integrated Intel GMA4500MHD graphics, 8X DVD burner, and the typical assortment of ports and extras.
Some folks that have (clearly) been hard at work at the New University of Lisbon have developed a breakthrough by creating a transistor that can change the color of almost any surface.
The team, which is responsible for most of the technology currently employed by Samsung displays, has so far been able to change the color of paper, glass, plastics, ceramics and metals. And, with the help of some friends at the University of Texas at Austin, they’ve filed for some patents right here in the US.
If you want to check out a video of the color change in progress (in Portuguese), be sure to peep a video here.
Pixel Qi has been talking up a new display technology as of late, one which promises to change the landscape in a big way. And soon. Next month is when Pixel Qi founder Mary Lou Jepsen says the company's 10-inch 3Qi display will start showing up, which will combine a low-power black and white mode, e-paper mode, and high-resolution color LCD mode into a single, affordable, sunlight-readable screen.
"The future of portables is all about the screen, Jepsen said. "Think of screen like a chip on the motherboard: it can massively lower power consumption and (increase) battery life and create a much better visual experience."
The focus on affordable isn't too surprising, considering Jepsen co-founded the One Laptop Per Child project, and is now focusing on making low-cost displays. It will be quite the feat if she and and her company can pull off an affordable miracle display, and she's already looking ahead to adding touch gestures as well.
At this point in the game, we can pretty much recite the core configuration of any new netbook that might appear, and it goes something like this. A 10.1-inch display (give or take an inch), Intel's Atom N270 processor (1.6GHz, 533MHz frontside bus, 512KB L2 cache), 1GB of RAM, a 160GB hard drive, three USB 2.0 ports, WiFi, Bluetooth, a mutlicard reader, and various other odds and ends. So it comes as no surprises that Sharp's Mebius PC-NJ70A follows that blueprint almost to a tee, if not for the combo trackpad / secondary display.
That's right - the PC-NJ70A's trackpad serves double duty as a secondary display with an LCD built right into the palm rest. Protected by a hard transparent material, the little LCD pushes pixels at a respectable 854 x 480 resolution, automatically adjusts brightness levels based on surrounding light, and supports handwriting recognition via the included software.
So far, street prices in Japan are hovering around ¥80,000 (about $817USD). No word yet on when, or if, Sharp plans to sell the Mebius stateside.
If you spot a good deal on an LCD monitor, you may consider pouncing. Putting off that purchase could be rolling the dice at higher prices, according to data by iSuppli. The market research company notes that an increase in demand from China, driven by the impact of China's rural consumer stimulus program, has led to rising prices for LCD monitor panels. Also to blame are an increase of orders from brands and retailers, iSuppli says.
"These brand and retail orders mostly stem from demand for inventory replenishment because channels have kept their stockpiles at lower-than-normal levels since the end of 2008," iSupply noted. "With many panel prices for monitors having been drastically slashed to less than cash-cost levels, panel buyers in February started purchasing in droves in order to build a supply of cheap panels."
Increases thus far haven't been anything to warrant hitting the panic button. According to iSuppli, average pricing for most LCDs and small-sized TV panels increased anywhere from $2 to $3 in March compared to February. And while prices are expected to rise some more in the short-term, iSuppli warns that it's too early to say that a recovery is taking place in the LCD industry, as the influx of orders are not expected to be sustained.
Currently in the development stage, the next iteration of Microsoft's Surface technology is probably about two or three years from materializing. SecondLight, as Microsoft refers to the Surface 2, will add a second camera to project images onto a layer that sits above the surface of the screen.
Also new to SecondLight / Surface 2 are built-in infrared sensors, so not only will it detect multitouch gestures, but it will be capable of reacting to mid-air movements without ever touching the screen.
While no specifics have been given about the cameras being used, Eric Klimczak, creative director of Clarity Consulting, which produces applications for the Surface, said he expects SecondLight to make use of high-definition cameras. And he's probably right, given that the Surface has been used for at least one high profile event coordinating Super Bowl security.
Pretty soon you may be able to link multiple gadgets together to create a larger display. The idea is part of Intel's "Carry Small, Live Large" initiative, in which the company looks to take mobile computing to the next level.
In the case of "Multi-Client Display Linking," as Intel's calling it, the chip maker isn't saying a whole lot just yet. But the gist of the concept is that users could take the displayed output from both new and legacy applications and span it across multiple devices. To give a real-world example, Intel says "Imagine you and 3 friends placing your mobile devices together while on the road to review the video of the day's events."
How Intel plans to link various mobile devices together and which ones will be supported remains to be seen. But stay tuned, as we have no doubt that we'll be hearing more about this concept in the coming months.
Japan-based electronics firm Hitachi Displays Ltd. has plead guilty to price fixing charges on the sale of LCD panels and has agreed to pay $31 million as part of its deal with the U.S. Justice Department.
"The case should send a strong message to multinational companies operating in the United States that when it comes to enforcing the U.S. antitrust laws we mean business," Acting Assistant Attorney General Scot Hammond said in a statement.
Hitachi, who admitted to fixing prices on screens sold to Dell for use in desktop monitors and notebook displays from 2001 to 2004, isn't the only display maker to be accused of price fixing. LG, Sharp, and Chungwha Picture Tubes all struck similar plea agreements last year, with LG having agreed to pay a $400 million fine for panels sold between 2001 and 2006. All tallied, the U.S. government will have garnered over $600 million in criminal fines from LCD price fixing.