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Mon, Oct 15, 2007 - Page 10 News List

Seiko Epson set to enter OEL panel battleground

AFP , TOKYO

Seiko Epson Corp plans to enter the organic electroluminescent (OEL) panels business in a move seen as increasing already severe competition in the flat-panel display sector, a report said yesterday.

Seiko Epson was seeking to take orders for the panels by the end of the year, as it has succeeded in extending the life span of OEL panels to compete with liquid-crystal-display (LCD) and plasma displays, the Nikkei Shimbun said, citing unnamed company sources.

OEL display panels use less power and offer brighter images and wider viewing angles than liquid crystal display panels.

However, the maximum life span of standard OEL devices is typically 30,000 hours, far fewer than the 60,000 hours for LCD and standard plasma displays.

Seiko Epson has now found a way to nearly double the life span of OEL panels to more than 50,000 hours, it said.

The company plans to start its OEL production with an eight-inch business-use monitor that is 2.8mm-thick at its thinnest part in its plant in Nagano Prefecture, the report said.

The company anticipates demand from stores and other commercial facilities as well as for use as monitors in car navigation systems, it said.

Rivalry over the booming global demand for flat-screen TVs has been intensifying among Japanese companies.

Electronics giant Sony Corp has said it plans to begin selling the world's first OEL television in December at a price of ¥200,000 (US$1,700).

Sony's next generation TV has a screen with a thickness of just 3mm, which was made possible because the organic display is self-luminescent and does not require a backlight.

Sharp Corp, the world's largest maker of LCD displays, said in August it had developed a 52-inch LCD TV that is just 2cm thick.

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