CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and SUNNYVALE, Calif - March 12, 2002 - E Ink Corporation, the leading developer of electronic ink technology for paper-like displays, and Royal Philips Electronics (AEX: PHI, NYSE: PHG), today announced the completion of the first phase of their JDA (joint development agreement) announced in February 2001. The two companies also stated their intent to commit additional spending and complete joint development and commercialization of high resolution electronic ink displays in mid-2003.
Philips made an investment in E Ink in February 2001, and started working together to jointly advance E Ink's research and development. Less than four months later, Philips and E Ink showcased their first display prototypes during the June 2001 Society for Information Display Symposium. Today's announcement marks substantial technical and commercial progress in the two companies' efforts to launch a joint Philips/E Ink display module product aimed at handheld devices such as electronic readers, PDAs and new mobile communication devices.
"Philips is leveraging its strengths in display technology and system architecture to help OEM customers create unique mobile products. In fact, we are already in design-in discussions with several leading customers," said Peter Hopper, CEO of Philips Components' Mobile Display Systems. "Electronic ink displays offer paper-like readability, are thin and light weight, and consume substantially less power than today's handheld displays. These attributes make them a perfect match for our vision of next-generation displays, particularly for smart handheld devices. We expect to be the first electronics company to bring this technology to market."
"We are excited to continue our positive relationship with Philips Components," said Jim Iuliano, president and CEO of E Ink. "Our two companies have worked together extensively over the past year to demonstrate the feasibility and appeal of active-matrix electronic ink displays. We completed the first phase, and are now ready to move into manufacturing and toward commercial launch."
About E Ink's Electronic Ink Technology
E Ink's electronic ink offers a paper-like look that provides three main benefits over traditional and emerging display technologies:
: Because it contains the same coloring agents as normal ink and paper, electronic ink is more than six times brighter than reflective LCDs, exceeds newspapers in contrast ratio and reads easily in both dim light and full sunlight. Like paper, electronic ink displays have a clear image that can be seen at any angle without a change in contrast. In addition, special properties of the ink enable smoother text characters than many displays used today.
: Electronic ink allows a fixed image to remain on the screen even after the power source is shut off, leading to dramatically longer battery life. The bright paper-white background of electronic ink also eliminates the need for a backlight in most lighting conditions. When commercialized, electronic ink displays will draw less than 1/10th the power required by other 'low power' display technologies commonly used in smart handheld devices, such as reflective LCDs. As a result, portable devices incorporating electronic ink displays could function with far smaller batteries, making them less expensive and more portable.
Thin, Light Flexible Form
: Active-matrix electronic ink displays built using glass-based TFT arrays are expected to be 50 percent thinner and lighter than traditional LCD displays. Future products promise to be even thinner and lighter when glass substrates are replaced.
About E Ink
E Ink Corporation was founded in 1997 to create a new medium for visual communications. E Ink's electronic ink display technology helps unleash the full power of our connected world by uniquely combining a paper-like reading experience with the ability to access information anytime, anywhere. E Ink's technology delivers the look, form and utility of paper encompassing broad design freedom, manufacturing flexibility and the ultimate in readability and portability. The company markets three types of displays: Ink-In-MotionTM displays for advertising and promotions; character and segmented displays for everything from signage to portable consumer products; and active-matrix graphical displays for smart handheld devices.
E Ink is a private corporation that includes among its investors and strategic partners VST, TOPPAN Printing Company, Philips Electronics, Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Motorola, Inc., Lucent Technologies, Creavis GmbH, The Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc., Havas (a division of the Vivendi Group in France), Langenscheidt Verlag, The Hearst Corporation, Atlas Venture, Applied Technology and Solstice Capital. E Ink is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts and has an office in Tokyo, Japan. For additional information, call 617-499-6000 or visit E Ink's Web site at http://www.eink.com
Royal Philips Electronics of the Netherlands is one of the world's biggest electronics companies and Europe's largest, with sales of $28.8 billion (EUR 32.3 billion) in 2001. It is a global leader in color television sets, lighting, electric shavers, medical diagnostic imaging and patient monitoring, and one-chip TV products. Its 189,000 employees in more than 60 countries are active in the areas of lighting, consumer electronics, domestic appliances, components, semiconductors, and medical systems. Philips is quoted on the NYSE (symbol: PHG), London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and other stock exchanges. News from Philips is located at http://www.news.philips.com.