Scientists at the University of Arizona have developed a new “flexible touchscreen” technology using traditional active matrix displays, that is set to hit the mass market in under 18 months.
Designed originally for Military use, the new technology utilizes a substitute plastic material which is more durable than glass, and obviously more flexible. The specialized plastic was developed primarily by DuPont Teijin Films, and can make for a device that is 100% flexible while still maintaining a high-level of rigidity and ruggedness.
The possibilities are imense. Not only would flexible wrist-watch phones of the future finally become a reality, but newspapers, magazines and other large-format publications could still go digital without having to be tied to a computer or device of some sort. Imagine taking out your large-screen “Kindle-like” device every morning to read the newspaper and simply folding the device back up when your finished. New content could be delivered to the device in real-time, and the reader could still read the content as if they were reading a newspaper, magazine, etc as they’re used to.
If anything were to save the newspaper, this technology combined with a large-screen device would be it. Besides the mobile content benefits, the mobile marketing opportunities would be plenty as well. As with any new mobile-based technology, it will open the door to new foms of advertising that may not have been possible before.
Publication advertising, such as in newspapers and magazines, have dropped significantly in recent years, and by bringing those publications into the digital age, it will also bring traditional display and contextual advertising into the world of mobile marketing.
It’s a rather exciting mobile technology advancement, and one that will make waves in both the mobile device segment as well as the mobile content and marketing industries. I just hope it’s ready to be released sooner rather than later.