Research analysis
Expanding IoT applications instrumental to small- and medium-size panels, says Digitimes Research
Jen-Chieh Yang, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei
Thursday 14 June 2018

Newly developed small- and medium-size display solutions showcased at the recently concluded Computex 2018 indicate that flat panel makers are still keen on the development of related biometric technologies such as fingerprint and 3D sensing so as to cope with the prevailing trend in the smartphone industry, Digitimes Research has found.

While panel makers appear to have slowed down on the development of related technologies for profile cutting, expanding IoT applications such as those for smartwatches, smart speakers and air-quality detectors, as well as increasing panel sizes for tablet and automotive applications, will serve as an impetus for makers to ramp up their shipments of small- and medium-size panels.

Among exhibitors, US-based IC supplier Synaptics was highlighting its in-display fingerprint solutions that have already entered volume production, while Taiwan-based Himax Technologies were showcasing its 3D sensing technology co-developed with Qualcomm.

Since Apple was able to only incorporate 3D sensing technology into iPhone X but without the support of in-display fingerprint technology in 2017, other smartphone vendors are trying eagerly to incorporate these two benchmark identification technologies into their flagship models.

Asustek Computer's exhibition of a touch-enabled 5.5-inch Full HD panel laminated on the top of a touchpad that can optimize the use Microsoft's Office software on notebooks is also instrumental for panel maker to develop small- and medium-size panels for notebook applications, Digitimes Research said.

On the development of new display technology, the MicroLED solutions demonstrated by the Taiwan government-backed Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) was still unable to emit red-color light when the MicroLED chips are massively transferred to flexible substrates, which indicates that the MicroLED technology still has a long way to go before becoming a promising technology for small- and medium-size panels.

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