E Ink has just unveiled a new prototype that has a 32 inch foldable display. It opens and closes like a real book and this technology might come to a new e-reader in the near future. It has a custom designed hinge underneath the display, so it does not interfere with the reading experience.
Foldable displays are nothing new for E Ink. The company released a dual screen 10.3 inch model in 2007 and this led to companies such as Gvido to release a $1,200 dual screen 13.3 inch sheet music reader a couple of years ago, but it only reads PDF files. There was also the eOnebook out of Japan that had two six inch e-ink screens, but it only worked with Manga and you could not sideload anything.
The educational enotebook and e-reader sectors are two of the obvious choices for this foldable E Ink screen. I believe that it is the closest anyone has come to mimcing the real book experience on e-paper.
Companies are taking a serious look at this tech and investing money in the RND process to see if there is anything there. TCL has developed DragonHinge technology that acts as a mechanical housing for foldables “allowing them to fold and bend in support of a variety of use cases.” Meanwhile LG has just developed a dual screen case for their new flagship smartphone that lets you watch a movie on one screen and search IMDB on the other.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.