The main trend at this year’s Display Taiwan exhibition, following Computex 2008, was power consumption. Many exhibitors showed low power alternatives for television displays of every size. These low power panels usually need less back lighting compared to standard ones. There are different technologies involved. Computex LCDs for example are picking up the trend to switch from cold-cathode lighting onto new lower power and brighter LED backlighting. One benefit from the switch is significantly better contrast and brightness.
We managed to see some impressive new lower power displays, showing power savings that definitely left us impressed. CPT for example, demonstrated a new advanced low power display that operated at only 69 watts compared to a conventional display that was running at 122 watts. Impressive to say the least.
Most if not all these displays uses special films applied to the panels, such as the ones manufactured by 3M. these films raise the brightness without needing to increase the backlighting. The disadvantage is the increase of reflections that we already know very well. According to 3M with its latest film technology, there can be as much as 50% of power saving by reducing the cold cathode fluorescence. Although in this situation, switching to other forms of backlighting such as LED, can provide power savings as well as better brightness all at once.
White LED displays also need a film, but have a half-life less than a standard LCD display — 30,000 hours against 40,000. However, LED displays provide more brightness with the same amount of backlighting. White LEd display panels also currently cost more to produce than standard LCDs but gives two great advantages: low power consumption, of course, but also the possibility to build ultra thin displays thanks to the fact that only one light bar instead of two for cold-cathode backlighting.
Finally the last trend of the exhibition: thinner and smaller is better. As you can see panel manufacturers have achieved excellent results that will help designers to create even better looking and thinner televisions.