Expect to hear the somewhat disturbing term “electrowetting” thrown around over the next few years. Samsung announced yesterday that it completed its buyout of Liquavista, a company focused on next-generation electrowetting display technology, last month.
Electrowetting tech allows for displays that are bright, low-power, flexible, and transparent, making for easy outdoor reading. Samsung says the acquisition will further its position in next-gen display technology, and that it will pioneer the use of electrowetting in e-paper and transparent displays. And since the technology can be manufactured by tweaking LCD production lines, Samsung doesn’t have to invest much to start taking advantage of it.
Liquavista’s technology has a wide variety of uses in mobile devices, including phones, media players, and e-readers. Samsung says that when it comes to e-paper, electrowetting displays are more than 70 times faster than existing e-ink displays, which will allow for color video (something e-ink has struggled to deliver).
Samsung already showed off some flexible and transparent display technology at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this month, and I’ve seen a large-screen transparent display from the company in action last year. We likely won’t see flexible or transparent displays for retail this year, but I can just imagine how the technology will be implemented over the next few years.