Pixel Qi Hits the Big Time

Illustration for article titled Pixel Qi Hits the Big Time

Pixel Qi's Transflective LCD technology has been blowing minds since late 2009 but has yet to gain much traction in the market—beyond the Notion Ink Adam, that is. But that may change with its latest round of funding, provided largely by 3M.


Traditional LCD screens are a pain to read in bright light and suck down power like electric Kool-aid because they have to brighten the display to compensate for the glare. E-Ink displays are great for reading outdoors because they lack that glare but can't display the vibrant color of normal LCDs. The disruptive display LCD technology developed by Pixel Qi, on the other hand, combines the best of both screen types into a single, low-consumption, full-color display that's easily readable indoors and out.

"The combination of Pixel Qi's low energy, reflective display technology with 3M's innovative technologies will create exciting products for the mobile, handheld, tablet and other display markets." said Jim Bauman, vice president of the 3M Optical Systems Division in a press release. It's expected that this investment by 3M will allow Pixel Qi access into larger consumer markets as well as digital touch-screen signage. 3M, alternately, will get access to Pixel Qi's sweet energy saving technology for its own displays. [Market Watch via Tech Crunch]

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There's something I don't quite get about screen tech. Back when HTC wasn't a brand name yet, churning out smartphones branded only with carrier logos, I owned a T-Mobile MDA. It had a screen that was perfectly visible even under direct sunlight. This was back in 2005. How come the state of the art's moved backwards in this regard?