Higher ppi displays crucial for AR/VR: Q&A with INT chairman David Chu
Rebecca Kuo, Tainan; Steve Shen, DIGITIMES
 Monday 30 March 2020

Taiwan-based Innovative and Transformation (INT) is a knowledge-based company dedicated to developing glass-based display devices with ultra-high pixel density for AR/VR and other applications.

The company has recently rolled out what it describes as the world's first 0.7-inch AMOLED display with a pixel density of up to 2300ppi. Company chairman David Chu said in a recent interview with Digitimes that displays with higher ppi will be able to tackle the dizziness caused by VAC (vergence-accommodation conflict) on AR/VR devices, a major breakthrough crucial for further development of the AR/VR industry.

Q: What is the significance of the latest technology breakthrough achieved at your company?

A: Our recent efforts enabled the successful production of the world's first RGB side by side AMOLED display device with a resolution of up to 2300ppi dedicated to applications for AR glasses. Compared to silicon substrate-based white-light OLED panels, our RGB OLED technology comes with a wider color gamut, higher brightness, lower power consumption, as well as better OLED lifespan development - advantages that meet underlying demand for AR glasses.

The dynamic picture shown by the 0.7-inch display device indeed highlights our in-house developed uNEED (ultra high pixel density in near eyes display) technology, paving the way for the adoption of this technology for volume production of related display products.

There is no color filter in our uNEED architecture, with RGB emitting light directly for achieving better color saturation, contrast, image quality, and brightness than those delivered by the silicon-based OLED microdisplays.

Instead of using an integrated architecture built on silicon-based OLED microdisplay backplane with ICs, the uNEED technology adopts an architecture combining glass backplane with silicon-based IC that can significantly improve yield rates for manufacturing.

Q: What are the technological differences between INT's RGB AMOLED displays and those AMOLED currently available for use by smartphones?

A: Both of our RGB side by side AMOLED and smartphone-use AMOLED technologies are built on a similar architecture; a major difference is that AMOLED displays built with our uNEED technology can maintain an aperture ratio of 70% at a pixel density of 3000ppi leveraging our patented technology, compared to an aperture ratio of below 20% when current smartphone-use AMOLED displays reach a pixel density of 500ppi.

Additionally, in comparison to the ultra-high pixel density display technologies currently available in the market which are all based on a white light + color filter (CF) architecture, our uNEED's RGB side by side architecture delivers higher contrast ratio (100,000:1 versus 10,000:1), higher brightness (3000 nits or higher versus 2000 nits) and can reduce power consumption of over 30% at the same brightness rating. These specs are very crucial features for AR/VR glass applications.

Q: How would the AR/VR industry continue to evolve?

A: INT's RGB side by side AMOLED technology is now able to be realized on glass and will be available with strong cost advantages in the near future, which will be instrumental to pushing the popularity of AR/VR devices.

A further upgrade in display specs such as pixel density is technologically required to address the dizziness caused VAC (vergence-accommodation conflict) on AR/VR devices, and therefore displays with higher ppi is a must for further development of the AR/VR industry.

We also believe that related AR/VR applications will grow rapidly in some specific areas such as medical care, education and aerospace before gaining momentum in the consumer sector.

INT is in talks with a well-known eye clinic to develop a visual aid device for the visually impaired. We hope to use displays with ultra-high pixel density to help and enable patients with amblyopia disease caused by macular degeneration to see the light again.

We are also discussing with a number of educational product brands for possible cooperation. We initially aim to develop a series of multi-functional smartwatches that can pair with AR teaching aids to optimize the effectiveness of remote teaching.

With respect to the aerospace industry, INT is also working with international vendors to develop next-generation helmets with microdisplay panels.

Q: Is there a timetable for INT to kick off volume production of its advanced display products?

A: We hope that we can bring the technology to the market fast. To this end, we plans to deliver during this year the EVK (evaluation kit) and engineering samples of our 0.7-inch 2300ppi displays to downstream clients for verification.

Meanwhile, we are also overhauling our R&D center to enable collaborative efforts with clients to conduct reliability tests for mass production. The overhaul project is set to complete by the fourth quarter of 2020.

INT chairman David Chu

INT chairman David Chu
Photo: Rebecca Kuo, Digitimes, March 2020

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To learn more about INT and its technology, please visit website at www.int-tech.com.tw/en/, or contact INT via email at INT.NBD@int-tech.com.tw