Thu, Jun 07, 2007 - Page 11 News List

Flexible display maker planning production increase

By Lisa Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Prime View International Co (元太科技), the world's only supplier of flexible displays, yesterday said it planned a massive increase in production by the end of this year to cope with increasing demand.

Supplying 20 companies including Sony Corp, Prime View will offer a large array of new products such as 6-inch flexible displays for electronic readers, or e-books, chairman Scott Liu (劉思誠) told a press briefing.

"The new flexible displays will be child-friendly and suitable for use in the education market," Liu said.

An electronic reader with a paper-thin flexible display, for instance, can store hundred of books via a USB drive, or PC, and can run for 7,000 hours before needing a recharge.

Liu said Prime View's new products would be more flexible than its existing screens, as the new displays would only use one layer of glass rather than liquid crystal sandwiched between two layers of glass.

With digitalized content becoming more available, the era of e-books and e-papers depicted in the film Minority Report is much closer to reality than a few years ago, Liu said, adding that seven out of 20 of its customers were scheduled to unveil new products by the end of the year.

Prime View, which focuses on flat screens smaller than 10-inches for DVD players, moved into the flexible display market in 2005 after buying a unit from Royal Philips Electronics NV.

"The new business has helped us obtain better margins than our competitors," Liu said. Prime View reported 6.78 percent operating margins in the first quarter of this year, while most flat-panel makers posted losses.

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