E Ink color e-paper produces a very high quality, full color reflective display. In the ACeP system, the ink can produce full color at every pixel, without the use of a color filter array. E Ink is currently showcasing ACeP in both 32 inch and 13.3 inch at SID Display Week and the company is hoping to roll make the 13.3 commercially available in late 2018 or early 2019.
The 13.3 inch color e-paper can display over 32,000 different colors and has a resolution of 1600 x 2500 pixels and 150 PPI. ACeP achieves a full color gamut, including all eight primary colors, using only colored pigments. The display utilizes a single layer of electrophoretic fluid, which is controlled using voltages compatible with commercial TFT backplanes. The fluid can be incorporated into either microcapsule or Microcup structures. The richness of the colors is achieved by having all the colored pigments in every picture element (pixel) rather than the side-by-side pixel colors achieved with a CFA. This eliminates the light attenuation, which can be quite significant. Like regular E Ink ePaper, ACeP maintains the ultra-low-power and paperlike readability under all lighting conditions.
In developing ACeP, E Ink researchers solved the very complex problem of how to get reflective color at every pixel in a commercially viable structure. Other approaches have utilized stacked backplane structures that are complex, difficult to manufacture and costly. The E Ink approach utilizes only a single backplane. Many materials and waveform inventions were required to independently control the position of the multiple color pigments.
It will be interesting to see how this technology will disrupt the digital signage market, since every product has just been with the traditional black and white screen. At least we finally know the two different screen sizes E Ink is going to roll out and have an estimated release date.
Michael Kozlowski has written about audiobooks and e-readers for the past twelve years. Newspapers and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times have picked up his articles. He Lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.