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Samsung's new LCD can display independent images on either front or back

When Samsung isn't making rapid advances in the area of memory technology, it's looking for ways to improve display technology. Samsung announced it developed the world's slimmest mobile LCD screen in November. The 0.82 mm thick screen featured a QVGA resolution and a 500:1 contrast ratio. Today, Samsung is showing off the world’s first truly double-sided LCD which can produce independent images on either side of the display.

Only a reverse of the original image data can be displayed on the opposing side with conventional double-sided LCDs. With Samsung's double-gate, TFT design, the LCD features two gates which operate each pixel instead of just one. This is what allows Samsung to produce two independent images. Amorphous Silicon Gate (ASG) technology also allows Samsung to manage the increase in TFT gates without a subsequent increase in driver ICs.

One backlight is shared between the two LCDs. The front LCD is transmissive and the opposing screen is reflective (which allows it to capture some of the light from the main screen). In its current form, Samsung's double-sided LCD is 2.6mm thick with a QVGA resolution. Brightness levels register at 250 nits for the front panel and 100 nits for the back panel.

"Our new double-sided mobile display underscores Samsung's commitment to equip our customers with advanced display technology that accelerates the trend toward slimmer mobile products. We anticipate high demand when we commence mass production in the first half of 2007," said Samsung Executive Vice President Yun Jin-hyuk.

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What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By leidegre on 1/4/2007 12:14:00 PM , Rating: 2
I could think of cell phones which could display some intresting stuff on top of the lid, the LCD beeing the lid, while then using the backfacing screen as a cell phone display, or even, playing battleship with two displays, but isn't this just a bit more costly and power hungry than needed for celluar phones?

What do you really need a double sided LCD for?

By Cullinaire on 1/4/2007 12:17:52 PM , Rating: 5
If you build it, they will come.


By Lonyo on 1/4/2007 12:46:09 PM , Rating: 2
And it may have some commercial applications.
In the supermarkets in the UK they have LCD's on all the aisles. If they were double sided, they could have either half the number, or twice the exposure.

By Torched on 1/4/2007 3:09:20 PM , Rating: 2
They could easily use this for a home docking station. Plop the laptop in a monitor-like stand at home and flick a switch and the laptop would succesfully replace a desktop computer with included bluetooth kb/ms.

By therealnickdanger on 1/4/2007 12:50:01 PM , Rating: 2
Microsoft's SideShow (SlideShow?) comes to mind. Rather than the currently ugly external LCD on the lid of laptops, one could be seamlessly integrated... possibly for less money, too.

RE: What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By chsh1ca on 1/4/2007 1:37:02 PM , Rating: 3
Think of the laptop/tablet combos. Right now, you have to flip the monitor up, spin it, then fold it down backwards. Imagine having the LCD built into the back of your laptop panel where you just pop the cover off and you're good to go. Heck, you could even treat it as a second output. Even as a toy for say, business meetings, it could become whatever would be on the 2nd monitor.

Sure it has limited usefulnes. Cell phones are a good example though: already they have to cram two screens into flip phones for the top facing screen, now you could do it with just one, which will either thin them considerably, or give them more space to use for something else. :)

RE: What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By vdig on 1/4/2007 2:00:46 PM , Rating: 5
I can already see what people could do with this technology. Professors and school teachers and/or students with presentations could be teaching class, with the side pointing to the class showing lecture notes and examples. On the other side, the instructor would be playing F.E.A.R., which results in random interjections of swearing in between lecture points. Score one for counter-productivity.

Seriously, I think there will be some interesting uses of this technology. As a gamer, I can come up with a few more. Multi-player without splitting the screen is nice.

By leidegre on 1/4/2007 2:14:20 PM , Rating: 2
Thought of that to, but wouldn't the screen be a bit too small for lecturing?

RE: What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By chaos386 on 1/4/2007 1:57:59 PM , Rating: 3
A lot of flip phones already have two LCDs, at the cost of having a bulge to accommodate the second screen, double backlights, double the circuitry, etc. This is a way to get the same result using less power, since they'll share the backlight and a lot of the circuitry.

By GaryJohnson on 1/4/2007 2:14:30 PM , Rating: 2
I have a Cingular 3125 (HTC StrTrk); from my observations it seems to share a single backlight between it's external and internal displays.

RE: What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By Serlant on 1/5/2007 9:30:13 AM , Rating: 2
i would think it would be a bit slim for a mobile screen? becuase it is so thin. You couldnt really make it fatter because it shares the same light source, so you'd either have ti case it in somethingand have a very think piece of plastic infront of one side, or put it in the middle and have half as thick plastic on either side. maybe? :S.

By GaryJohnson on 1/5/2007 4:12:23 PM , Rating: 2
There appears to be about 1mm to 2mm of empty space and clear plastic over each of the displays on the 3125.

The entire height of the display section is about 7mm.

I concur that the double LCD portion of the unit is between 3mm and 5mm thick.

By othercents on 1/4/2007 2:03:06 PM , Rating: 2
Video glasses. One side you have video playing that you can view and the other side you have eye balls looking at the world and blinking and stuff. That would be trippy.


By dice1111 on 1/5/2007 10:43:55 AM , Rating: 2
Sort of like the Homer Simpson Jury glasses, just watching TV instead of sleeping...

RE: What use do you have for a double sided LCD?
By ahkey on 1/4/2007 2:42:54 PM , Rating: 2
The most obvious use to my mind would be dual-purpose monitors.

One side with high response rate for games/films with the reverse sporting a deeper-colour panel for image management/cad.

By othercents on 1/4/2007 5:09:39 PM , Rating: 2
Oh another monitor idea is to have a LCD checkout monitor with touchscreen on one side for the clerk to select the items the person purchased and the other side of the screen to show the customer the price and all the items. Right now this is either done with two screen or one screen that swivels.


By Frank M on 1/4/2007 2:49:48 PM , Rating: 2
I don't know about you, but my last three cell phones have had two screens on opposite sides. It could be useful for laptops too, if the screens can be made to be different sizes.

Depending on the price, there might be a way to set up work stations so that one screen is shared by two users.

By Senju on 1/4/2007 11:03:47 PM , Rating: 2
Fashion! Can you imagine having a Laptop that can have your favorite design light up on the front and change very day? About a cool screen saver? How about doing your work as a normal laptop and on the other side "DO NOT Disturb"?

How about a test. You can type in "YES" and a big "YE" will display on the fount for the teacher to see.

By theEnchanter on 1/5/2007 3:32:10 PM , Rating: 2
Another application would be to use it in multi-projector interfacing, were one would use several projectors to display a single image onto one, abnormally large screen (or a 3 dimensional surface area, like the typical 6 inner sides of a room) and not loose display resolution. I personally know a private company near my town that is currently working on a program solution to make that process faster and easier (and having more LCD screens within each projector could cut costs for them and their product)…

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad
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