AU Optronics's Flexible E-Paper Can Charge Itself

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[Photo: AU Optronics]

I thought that E-ink was just about tapped out for innovation and the only thing that could be improved was its refresh rate. But then AU Optronics (AUO), one of the world's largest makers of LCD screens, came out with this concept e-reader that’s self-powered and is as flexible as real paper.

AUO built its e-reader device using a flexible organic TFT display and a thin-film photovoltaic battery. Thanks to the built in solar cell, the e-reader can be completely self-powered while it is being used in sun light, as it generates "1-watt or more" of electricity.

Unfortunately, the photovoltaics can’t pull enough energy out of indoor lighting, so the device needs to be plugged into external rechargeable battery.

The device is also much thinner and flexible than your typical Nook or Kindle. So if this actually makes it into stores, it could be a decent 6-inch e-reader, with an 800 by 600-pixel resolution, that you could roll, fold, or slip into any bag.

[AU Optronics via Tech-On]

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