Reflective displays are a type of display technology changing how people interact with their digital devices. This article will explore the basics of reflective displays, including how they work, what options exist, the benefits they offer, and the various applications of this technology. By the end of this guide, you will have a better understanding of this exciting and innovative display technology.
A reflective display is a type of display technology that uses ambient light to create an image, rather than using a backlight or a front light like traditional transmissive displays. This technology is based on the principle of reflection, where light is bounced off the display's surface rather than transmitted through it. As a result, reflective displays can create an image using only the light available in their environment rather than requiring an external light source, which makes them highly energy-efficient and well-suited for use in portable devices such as smartwatches and e-readers. The obvious downside is that reflective displays are not readable in low-light conditions. This can be solved using a so-called transflective display technology, which includes an active light source only when needed.
Several different technologies can be used to create a Reflective Display, including:
One of the key advantages of reflective displays is their low power consumption. The power consumption of traditional display can simply be expressed as:
Pdisplay = Ppanel + Pbacklight
For most displays, the power of the backlight (Pbacklight) is at least ten times higher than the power of the panel (Ppanel). Reflective displays are, as a result of no backlight, at least ten times less power-hungry than transmissive displays with backlights. This makes them ideal for use in portable devices such as smartwatches, e-readers, and various IoT devices, where battery life is a critical factor.
Reflective displays are readable in high outdoor light conditions and even direct sunlight. This is a major advantage compared to traditional displays that basically compete with sun rays, which is a challenging game to win.
Furthermore, most reflective displays are thinner and more lightweight since the display stack comprises fewer layers and materials (e.g., no backlight). They can also more easily be fabricated on thin and flexible substrates, creating an overall lighter and thinner structure. Read more about Flexible Displays.
Overall, reflective displays are a promising technology that has the potential to revolutionize the way we interact with digital devices. Ynvisible is leading the way in reflective display technology with its printed e-paper display based on cutting-edge electrochromic display technology.
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