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Printed Electronics World
Posted on October 24, 2007 by  & 

Sharp embeds sensors in LCDs in Japan

LCD panels equipped with touch screen and scanner functions using an optical sensor built into each pixel of the panel have been developed by Sharp Corporation.
An optical sensor is built into each pixel of the LCD panel, eliminating the need to bond a film to the panel for touch screen functions, and providing beautiful images without losing display image quality.
Today, touch screen functions are becoming indispensable on displays for mobile devices such as smartphones, digital cameras, PDAs, and UMPCs. However, conventional methods to provide such functions mainly involve laminating or bonding a film on top of the LCD panel, leading to problems with reduced display image quality and increased thickness for the display section.
This technology eliminates the need for films, resulting in a thinner, beautifully clear screen display compared to conventional touch screens. In addition, tactile recognition based on simultaneously touching multiple points on the screen is now possible, a feature previously difficult to implement. For example, users can easily tap the screen with two fingers to enlarge or reduce a displayed map. Also, the scanner function can be used to scan in a business card placed on top of the screen, and further improvements to this function are expected to enable fingerprint authentication in the future.
Sharp began shipping samples of the panels last month and expects to begin volume production in Spring 2008.
Top image: System LCD with embedded optical sensors
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