New Technology Greatly Improves Visibility and Durability over Conventional Film/Glass Touch Panels
KYOTO, Japan — Kyocera Corporation (NYSE:KYO) (TOKYO:6971) (President: Makoto Kawamura) announced today that it will begin mass producing glass/glass touch panels for liquid crystal displays (LCDs) in October 2008, a move that fully engages the company in both the LCD and touch panel markets.
Kyocera's new touch panels feature a unique glass/glass structure which provides superior visibility and durability compared with the film/glass structure of conventional LCD touch panels. By equipping its current LCD models with the new glass/glass touch panels, Kyocera will release a new line of high value-added touch panel LCDs ideally suited for use in industrial equipment. Kyocera will also supply touch panels separately.
Industrial equipment manufacturers are generating increased demand for touch-panel-equipped LCDs, which permit greater design flexibility, user-friendliness and space efficiency. At the same time, these customers demand continuous improvement in operational stability, visibility in varying light conditions, and durability in harsh outdoor environments.
In response to these demands, Kyocera will provide touch panels that feature a glass/glass structure ― using glass as the substrate on both the main body side and the “touch” side ― instead of the conventional structure which uses a film for the “touch” substrate. This glass/glass structure provides higher transparency with clear visibility, and its hermetically sealed structure ensures improved durability as well.
Kyocera manufactures and distributes LCDs mainly for industrial applications, such as factory automation, measurement instruments, and medical equipment. By entering the touch panel business, Kyocera will be able to respond to diverse customer demands by drawing on its extensive experience in customization and rich resources as a stable supplier.
Kyocera further improves the overall visibility in outdoor applications by offering glass/glass structure touch-panel-equipped LCDs as a complete unit with “inner touch panel” ― a design which transfers the polarizer surface coating, typically applied directly to the LCD, to the “touch” substrate ― drastically reducing the amount of inner reflection between the touch panel substrates and the LCD.
Features of the Glass/Glass Touch Panel
- Clear Visibility. The use of highly transparent glass substrates reduces diffraction and warping, ensuring clear visibility.
- Superior Durability. Because glass is used for the substrates on both sides – as compared to the conventional film/glass structure – the panel provides superior durability within a wide range of temperatures.* The panel also resists condensation, even in environments with high humidity.
*Storage temperature range: -40°Cto 95 °C, Operating temperature range: -30°C to 85°C
- Customization Capacity. Calling on the extensive experience in flexible customization developed through its LCD business, Kyocera can meet custom requirements for substrate thickness, overall size and optional surface films.
- Substrate thickness: Operational side: 0.2 mm, Display side: 0.5 mm to 1.8 mm
- Display sizes: 3.5” to 10.4”
- Surface film: Kyocera can provide optional film coatings, including “inner touch panel,” to counteract a wide range of reflection and glare conditions
- Long Term Supply Stability. Customers in the industrial equipment market require long-term stability in their supply chain, even for products shipped in small quantities. In addition to fulfilling exact specifications, Kyocera’s expertise as a manufacturer of both touch panels and LCDs offers unique opportunities for design collaboration while ensuring stable supplies of both LCDs and touch panels over the long term.
To meet emerging demands, Kyocera is planning to expand its product line with the potential development of direct bonding ― a technology that significantly reduces surface reflection by affixing the touch panel and LCD together with transparent adhesive ― along with the development of a projection-capacitive touch panel capable of multi-point touch detection.