Electronic Visualization for the Next Century

  • Sharp Makes a Big Play for Ultra HDTV

    June 12, 2015

    Last Wednesday, Sharp held a TV showcase in Lower Manhattan and showed that they’re still committed to the North American television market. Said commitment came in the form of nine models of Ultra HD (3840x2160) sets, ranging in size from 43 inches to a wall-sized 80-inch model. Some background is useful before I proceed. Nine years ago, Sharp was the #1 retailer of LCD TVs in the world, commanding a 21% market share and leaving Korean competitors LG and Samsung eating their dust. But time changes everything. Since then, Sharp’s WW market share has steadily declined to the point that the brand is usually classified with “other” when analysts release their quarterly and annual rankings for shipments and revenue share. Part of that is due to the guerilla marketing and sales strategies employed by both Samsung and LG: The first company remains comfortably in 1st place with a 27% market share, while LG is a distant 2nd with 15%. Many of the once-famo..Read more

  • Waiting for Godot

    May 29, 2015

    It takes a long time to develop novel display technologies. As a result, product designers sometimes express a desire for display characteristics that the industry cannot supply -- at least not yet, and maybe never. It can work the other way, though. Candice Brown Elliott's brilliant Pentile Display architecture was initially developed to improve efficiency, effective pixel density, and battery life in laptop PCs using LCDs. Instead, the industry found ways to use a brute-force approach and create LCDs with more and more physical pixels, along with sufficient energy savings from improved backlights. Pentile waited for years to find its killer app: allowing Samsung to make larger OLED subpixels for a given pixel format, thus reducing current density and improving lifetime. Sometimes, the app never comes and what once seemed a golden window of opportunity slams shut, never to re-open. That is more or less what happened to field-emission displays (FEDs). When development work began ..Read more