CIVITAS highlights the use of e-paper in sustainable mobility

CIVITAS highlights the use of e-paper to improve transport in cities.civitas-epaper-transport-Ljubljana-bus-stop

Electronic paper displays with advanced passenger information at Ljubljana’s Slovenska street.

The European Union CIVITAS Conference 2016 showcased the future of cities with the electronic paper.

After being crowned the European Green Capital 2016 and being one of the first cities in the world to implement low energy electronic paper displays at bus stops in the city centre, it was only fitting that Ljubljana host a conference dedicated to sustainable urban mobility.

The electronic paper can drive the development of a smart and sustainable public transportation system.

The 13th edition of the CIVITAS Forum Conference took place in Ljubljana between 7 and 9 October 2015: the EU initiative, launched in 2002, aims to redefine transport measures and policies in order to create cleaner, better transport in cities. This year’s event was organized under the theme ‘Sharing the city’ and was dedicated to innovative, smart and sustainable mobility solutions in European cities. Beyond that, an important driver of building an accessible city and improving the quality of urban life.

Among the smart mobility solutions showcased at the conference were several electronic paper passenger information displays developed by Visionect and its partners in cooperation with E Ink, the leading ePaper manufacturer.

“E Ink’s ePaper displays consume very little power to switch an image, and zero power to retain the image, making it one of the lowest power signage displays in the world,” said E Ink’s Head of Signage Business Mr. Harit Doshi, explaining why the technology is an ideal public information display solution for sustainable urban developments.

Added E Ink’s Chief Strategy Officer Dr. Paul Apen, also among the dignitaries visiting the conference at the invitation of Zoran Janković, Mayor of Ljubljana: “ePaper technology will significantly contribute to the development of smart cities and communities, which are leveraging modern information and communication technologies to raise the quality of living.”

E Ink’s ePaper displays consume very little power to switch an image, and zero power to retain the image, making it one of the lowest power signage displays in the world.

Mockup of arrival information at a Ljubljana bus stop, before and after: now provided in real time, on low power electronic paper technology as developed by Lecip.

An interactive bus stop with real-time passenger information provided on a solar-powered electronic paper display. This is an example of a bus pole implemented in London and developed by Technoframe.

A proposal of a color e-paper display providing route maps, real-time arrival information for different lines, bus timetables and add-on content such as weather and time for Ljubljana Passenger Transport.

Future of smart cities, dailylife products are already integrating e-paper. We did it with with our InkCase, the reading case which allows you to read articles and ebooks at the back of your iPhone.
 Source : VisIonect

Apple is reportedly putting a dynamic E Ink keyboard in 2018 MacBooks

Apple reportedly plans to put dynamic E-Ink keyboard into MacBook laptops by 2018.

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, the iPhone-maker is working with Australian startup Sonder, which is launching its own Bluetooth E-Ink keyboard later this year. The keyboards can be used to display not only the standard QWERTY layout, but also different alphabets and context-sensitive buttons for software like Photoshop.

However, the credibility of these rumors is not clear.

The WSJ cites anonymous sources “familiar with the plans,” and references a recent article in The Guardian claiming that Apple is currently in talks to buy Sonder. The UK paper says that Apple CEO Tim Cook met with Sonder’s chief executive Francisco Serra-Martins in China last week, although Sonder denies that this happened. It does not deny though that Serra-Martins was at the event.

The Guardian also cites a now-deleted Reddit post.

In this post, the author claimed to have used a prototype Apple E Ink keyboard developed using Sonder’s technology. The keyboard was said to have back-lighting and an E Ink display on each key, and was seen at a tech incubator event organized by … Foxconn — an Apple manufacturing partner and, according to the WSJ, a soon-to-be investor in Sonder.

As reported by The Guardian, the poster wrote of the keyboard: “It’s really a solid indication of the future of input technology. Apple has a reputation of making big leaps which are seen to be unpopular but then become the new standard. Dynamic keyboards are the standard for phones, they will be for laptops and desktops too.”

A tipster also contacted The Verge about this story.

He claimed to be a friend of the Reddit poster who had used the keyboard. The Verge has reached out to the poster to confirm her story, but has yet to hear back.

All of this is interesting evidence, but there’s certainly no smoking gun to indicate Apple’s intentions — either with regards to integrating Sonder’s technology into the MacBook, or to acquiring the startup. The Guardian’s report of Cook’s meeting with the Sonder CEO is light on details, and by itself a meeting does not indicate much.

Similarly, the only report we have of the Apple prototype keyboard that was supposedly on display at Foxconn’s incubator event is from the Reddit poster. He did not provide either images or video of the device. It’s worth noting that Sonder certainly benefit from these rumors, as they draw attention to the startup’s E Ink keyboard, which is available for pre order for $199.

We’ve contacted Apple to ask about this story and will update it when we know more.

Source: The Verge

Sony innovates with an e-ink screen on a watch

Sony announced an update to the curious-looking FES Watch with a new design.

 

The FES Watch U features an e-ink display and pairs with your phone. But the surprising part is that the band is also a flexible e-ink display, opening a brand new world of design possibilities — what an exciting time to be alive.

 

 

Sony is using the FES brand name for this watch as the company wants to emphasize the fashion aspect of the watch. While it’s a bit too big for my taste, it’ll definitely stand out compared to the Pebbles and Apple Watches out there. With the press of a button, the entire style of the watch changes, band included.

Due to the e-ink display, the band is thicker than a traditional leather, plastic or textile band.

For the black model, Sony uses premium material, such as steel and sapphire glass for the watch body — other models use glass. Thanks to the e-ink displays, the battery lasts for up to three weeks. The watch is also waterproof.

The company will ship 12 different watch face and band designs with the watch. You will be able to store 24 different designs on your watch. Let’s hope that the community or Sony itself will release more designs in the future.

Let’s talk about the more problematic part now. It doesn’t seem like Sony plans to sell this watch outside of Japan. Sony is doing a crowdfunding campaign to see whether people are interested in buying it. But don’t get your hopes up, as the original FES Watch was never released outside of Japan.

It’s not common to see e-ink on a Watch, have you seen e-readers to read e-books? No? Take a look to our article in which we compare reading on tablets vs e-readers.

The new HP ultra portable printer

HP released its new nomad printer …

You could go in for the full-throated nostalgia of an instant printer like the Fujifilm, Instax or that new dealie from Leica.

Otherwise, you can also pick up one of these things and let your smartphone do all of the heavy lifting.

HP’s new Sprocket is a pint-sized affair, priced at $130 — $70 less than the long-awaited Fujifilm Instax Share SP-2 and about the same as the company’s Instax Mini 70 instant camera. The handheld peripheral is likely shorter that you smartphone, measuring in at 4.53 x 2.95 x 0.87 inches and weighing in at 0.38 pounds.

 

The Sprocket (confuse it with the Sprout at your own peril) connects to an iOS or Android device via Bluetooth or NFC, using the company’s app to print 2 x 3 photos or stickers from the handset or social media.

The system utilizes the ZINK (Zero Ink), dumping the need for printer cartridges in favor of hea- activated dye color crystals in the paper. The photo version of the printing paper runs $10 a pack. Paper and printer both are available now through HP’s site.

Interested by reading more articles about innovations? This is the place to be. 

Source: TechCrunch

Sydney & the World’s First E Ink Traffic Signs

E Ink displays are an attractive way of displaying informations.

sydney-e-ink-signs

Those information don’t need to change by the second: they don’t use much power, are easy to read in variable lighting, and happen to be relatively affordable. Now, they’re finding use not just in handheld devices, though—but on the streets of Sydney, Australia.

The Australian Road and Maritime Services has rolled out the first large-scale deployment of E Ink signage on the city’s streets. Each sign is connected to central government authority servers via 3G. With this connection, they can be updated over-the-air at any time. They are lit to ensure that they’re readable at night. They’re also solar powered, which provides enough juice to keep them running. They do have a power supply in case they run low, especially when they need to be updated.

 

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The clear advantage, of course, is the flexibility they offer.

Instead of temporary signage or new signs when rules change, the city can simply send a message to the relevant signs to update and show the correct information. That should make for large civic saving and a better experience for citizens on the sidewalks, too.

Visionect, the company that developed the signs’ electronics and software, reckons that the inclusion of proximity, temperature and other sensors could make the signs even smarter in future. But for now, the street signs in Sydney are at least a little more flexible.

You want to know more about innovations? We have articles which are talking about the latest innovations.

Credit: Visionect

Giant E-Ink Screens Turn Trucks Into Dynamic Rolling Billboards

And if E-Ink technology could transform trucks …

 

 

Despite the gloriously colorful screens used in devices like the new iPhone 7, monochromatic E-Ink displays have remained a popular choice for devices like e-readers since they’re cheap, durable, and work fine in direct sunlight.

It also means they’re the perfect technology for turning trucks into in-your-face rolling billboards.

 

The giant E-Ink displays are developed by Mercedes-Benz, Visionect, and RoadAds Interactive.

They are actually each made up of four 32-inch E-Ink screens that are synced to function as a single three-by-five-feet display with a resolution of 1440 x 2560 pixels and 16-levels of grayscale.

Powered only by electricity drawn from the truck’s battery, the E-Ink displays are easy to mount and remove, so they can be transferred from truck to truck depending on its route and schedule. And they’re durable enough to withstand dust, inclement weather, and even a trip through a car wash—if you could find one large enough for a tractor trailer.

The E Ink displays also feature built-in 4G functionality, wi-fi, and GPS, allowing the advertisements displayed to be constantly updated. This is also relevant to where the truck happens to be rolling through. That’s part of the reason trucks aren’t already slathered in ads. The next day the vehicle could be three states away and billboards tend to be highly localized.

In terms of advertising, the truck on the road right next to you is going to make a stronger impression than a billboard on the side of the road that whizzes right past you. There is certainly some great potential for exposure with this approach. But the E-Ink screens could also be used to supply information to other motorists. Some examples? Like impending slow downs ahead, or other emergency details. They could even provide more accurate and up-to-date ‘how’s my driving?’ information for shipping companies to keep tabs on their employees—much to the chagrin of the driver behind the wheel.

You want to know more about innovations? We have articles which are talking about the latest innovations.

Credit: Visionect

JetBlue to Expand Soar with Reading Program to Florida Next Summer

JetBlue’s second annual “Soar with Reading” program has reached its successful conclusion in Detroit.

 

The airline JetBlue announced on Monday that next summer the program will expand next summer to include Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

 

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Fort Lauderdale was named the program’s next destination after winning the #BookBattle online voting competition, which ended last month.

 

The book vending machine program aims to distribute free books to children living in areas known as “book deserts.” The vending machines also help combat the “summer slide,” a term Susan B. Neuman, professor of literacy development and early childhood at New York University, describes as occurring when children do not have reading resources readily available during their summer break.

Five book vending machines were placed at locations throughout Detroit this summer, including at Matrix Human Services, where 9-year-old Paige Godbott and her friends visited to get books for their book club.

 

“It’s cool to come to a vending machine with books, instead of snacks,” Paige said.

The program started with three vending machines in DC last summer. They were followed by five vending machines installed in the Detroit area this summer. The machines were placed in areas which JetBlue described as “book deserts”. These areas have a low density of books to children.

Locals disputed that description of Anacostia last summer, but nitpicking details aside  these machines can only do good.

Last summer, for example, Soar with Reading distributed almost a hundred thousand books via vending machines and through community partners in DC.

 

Credit: The Digital Reader

 

E Ink is not only for eBooks. Here’s the alternative!

E-Ink is the company responsible for the e-reader revolution.

 

eink-reading

The company has started to diversify into different market segments in recent years.

They initially started to branch into digital signage which was valued at $16.88 Billion in 2015 and is expected to reach $27.34 Billion by 2022. E-Ink is also focused on price tags and has retail partnerships with Whole Foods. This segment has accounted for 100% percent year over year growth for the past three years and is now accounts for significant growth.

In the second quarter of 2016 E-ink has just posted an operating profit of $5,437,895 and this is the first time they have been profitable for quite awhile. In the first quarter of the year for example, they posted a $8.4 million dollar loss.

If you break down their financials 35% of their revenue derives from e-tags used in luggage, digital signage and LCD panels.

Over the course of the last few years E-ink has partnered with a European company called Visionect. They provide DIY kits for companies wanting to do things such as E-Ink Keyboards, Museums and bus signs.

Speaking of Bus Signs, this is a hot new growth market for E-Ink. Information is dynamic and all of the information is updated via 3G. The signs are also readable in direct sunlight and they also incorporate back lite technology, so the screens are illuminated at night.

There are a few in Australia right now, Boston and one near Waterloo Bridge in the United Kingdom. The UK is so happy with the technology that they plan is to introduce a further three in Parliament Square, Piccadilly Circus and Sloane Square in the next few months.

The core focus on alternative markets is starting to stagnant e-paper development for the e-readers. At SID Display Week this past May, E-Ink announced a new Advanced Color ePaper (ACeP), a high quality, full color reflective display. For the first time ever, an electrophoretic display (EPD) can produce full color at every pixel without the use of a color filter array. It can display over 32,000 different colors and has a resolution of 1600 x 2500 pixels and 150 PPI.

ACeP achieves a full color gamut, including all eight primary colors, using only colored pigments.

The display utilizes a single layer of electrophoretic fluid, which is controlled using voltages compatible with commercial TFT backplanes. The fluid can be incorporated into either microcapsule or Microcup structures. The richness of the colors is achieved by having all the colored pigments in every picture element (pixel) rather than the side-by-side pixel colors achieved with a CFA. This eliminates the light attenuation, which can be quite significant. Like regular E Ink ePaper, ACeP maintains the ultra-low-power and paper-like readability under all lighting conditions.

Sadly, this color e-paper will not be available to e-readers until 2018. It is incompatible with Regal, the EPD controller that makes e-readers able to make page turns quick and eliminates ghosting.

I have proclaimed on many occasions that the e-reader industry is not innovating anymore. There simply isn’t any new tech that will offer new user experiences or dramatically increase performance. IMX 7 the new dual core processor from Freescale might improve things, but unless E-Ink releases a new waveform controller, performance might be negligible. This will prevent people from enjoying things like animated page turns, watching videos or playing casual games from companies like Rovio or All Slots Canadian Online Casino.

 

Credit: goodreader

The future of traveling is with E-Ink

The E-Ink technology has been around for several years. The most common use today is for Amazon Kindle and Oaxis InkCase with stand-out features such as its readability under direct sunlight and its extreme low power consumption for battery.

Recently, popular luxury luggage maker – Rimowa has announced the roll out of the Rimowa’s Electronic Tag which is essentially an integration of E-Ink technology with their luggage to act as a substitute for the conventional paper luggage tag, commonly used to mark luggage. It uses Bluetooth connection to download data from supported airline apps for check-in details with its sight set on simplifying the process of printing and tagging at the airport.

rimowa-electronic-tag-app-oaxis-inkcase

The folks at Rimowa have also paired its luggage with an iOS compatible app that is used to initiate the E Ink tag to switch into the contact information mode. Unfortunately, at current stage, only Lufthansa Airlines has enabled its platform to sync with Rimowa’s latest E Ink luggage. So, Rimowa has cleverly enabled the app to sync images to its E Ink luggage to create a even more personal touch.

 

 

rimowa-electronic-tag-versions-1-oaxis-inkcase

 

 

 

Given that this innovation is specially designed for Airline travels, security will include a Bluetooth that can only be activated from within the case. The E Ink display is powered by twin AAA batteries that can last for months with reasonable screen refreshes. To sync with Rimowa’s renowned  built quality, the E Ink is shielded with Gorilla Glass – that is used by the iPhone you are holding onto now.

Source: Engadget

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 4 Reasons Why You Should Buy an eReader!

1. eReaders do not strain your eyes

eReaders can solve this problem: Spending long hours in front of a computer can cause repetitive strain injury (RSI) often inherent from direct glare where the light shines directly into your eyes. To prevent eye strains, experts recommends 30 minutes rest every 2 hours of computer usage.
On the other hand, e-ink is neutral. It does not emit light nor does it cause glares. Essentially, an eReader like the InkCase i6 does not obligate you to rest your eye at all!

2. It is light. Very light.

One of my travel essentials is a book, sometimes two if I am travelling for an extended period. An average eReader weighs in at 150g to 200g with a thickness of approximately 100 pages. Compare that to what I used to lug around – a Harry Potter book which weighs approximately 1.1kg and 600 pages thick. It is no wonder I never looked back to using a physical book anymore.

3. Never miss a bookmark

“Sometimes I can feel my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living” – Jonathan Safran Foer.
This beautiful literature quote would have otherwise been lost if not for the bookmark and search function of an eReader.
An eReader quickly and effortlessly lets you save pages, sentences or words only to be referred back with a simple search.

4. It cuts down on clutter

Hundreds of books used to stack on my study shelves. That all disappeared in 2009 when I bought myself an eReader. Typically, an eReader like the Kindle can hold approximately 3500 eBooks which allowed me to clear out the books sitting on the shelves.