Foldable, flexible notebook screens on the way

The researchers, at Philips Research Laboratories in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, built a prototype active-matrix display of 4096 pixels (64 pixels square) in which each pixel is controlled by a thin-film transistor (TFT) based on a polymer semiconductor.

TFT displays used in today's laptops are made using silicon semiconductors in a manufacturing process which requires an almost perfectly dust-free environment: the so-called clean room. "Making displays using polymer instead of silicon has the advantage that you can make it in less stringent production conditions," said Dr Marianne Vincken, spokesperson for Philips Research Laboratories.

"There's a huge market for active-matrix displays, and if all those could be made in this technology, it could save a lot of money," Vincken said.

The prototype is a polymer-dispersed liquid-crystal display (LCD), which uses ambient light and a reflective backing on a rigid glass substrate.

"For the time being, it's monochrome," Vincken said, "But in principle it can be used for all kinds of displays."

Possibilities include creating flexible displays by mounting the plastic polymer semiconductors on a flexible plastic substrate. Another technology, organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDS), could be used to backlight such displays. Philips has licensed OLED technology from its inventor, Cambridge Display Technology. But users may be in for a long wait: polymer display technology is at least five years away from mass production, said Vincken.

"It needs to be extended to larger displays, and nobody knows what we will find along the way," she said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Peter Sayer

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?