It's rare that the first people who get to use a ground-breaking technology are third-world students and home tinkerers. But a new type of LCD, which requires less power than conventional displays and is viewable even in bright sunlight, was originally developed by the company Pixel Qi for the One Laptop Per Child project and is now available as a DIY replacement screen for netbook computers.
(You can check out our interview with Pixel Qi founder Mary Lou Jepsen here.) The display combines the full color and fast motion of regular LCDs with E Ink's ability to operate without a backlight. Installation takes only about 15 minutes, with no special connections or software needed.
Click to launch the step-by-step photo gallery
Right now, the display costs $275 at MakerShed.com, so it's still best for early adopters or people who often use their netbooks outside. As production ramps up, though, expect the cost to drop quickly. Soon we'll all enjoy computing out in the sun without breaking the bank.
You got to wonder why something like this wasn't used on the iPad.
This kind of display is being used on the Notion Adam Ink, an Android Tablet out of India, supposedly coming to a store near you soon.
@tcolguin - because Apple sucks.
but that is just my general answer for any query involving iAnything iWontbuy
@jeditalian I don't like Apple either. Love the ad for the kindle where the guy with the iPad can't read in the sun.
Can you read it in the dark?
If you are talking about the kindle, no, but there is nothing stopping you adding/turning on a book light. And there are quite lively discussions why people don't want the back light, both from a weight point of view to ease of reading. The e-ink is much easier to read for long periods of time.
This is a great display and I hope it will become available as a factory installed option on all laptops soon.
Alternatively, how about offering a "middle page" version for this, to just add to any laptop - as opposed to having either or ...?
*God* I want that, but there's no way I'd risk messing up my machine (and never mind the screen that costs nearly as much by itself.) Eh. Someday, they'll all be AMOLEDs, anyway....
As as person with astigmatism (I can focus to 20/20 but it takes more effort), focusing on anything with a backlight for too long gives me a migraine even with my glasses. Reading a .pdf on the screen just is not going to happen. And to podboq, didn't your momma tell you not to read in the dark.