TOKYO – Panasonic has unveiled a transparent television, bendable battery, and a technology for transmitting data by human touch.
The Japanese electronic maker has been improving its transparent television by swapping out the LED screen for an OLED and now when in transparent mode, the set is completely undetectable – allowing users to clearly see through it. An OLED screen uses self-lighting pixels, while an LED uses a backlight to illuminate its pixels.
The ‘invisible’ TV was first seen at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this past January in Las Vegas Nevada.
At first glance, it looks like a glass pane in a sliding door, but with a push of a button or wave of a hand a television screen instantly appears.
As the name suggests, transparent OLED screens are made up only of transparent components (cathode, anode and substrate).
When the panel is on, the self-illuminating pixels produce a picture, and when the screen is off, the components go back to being transparent. OLEDs can also be designed to be more flexible and even rollable.
Besides this invisible TV, Panasonic has unveiled another technology – bendable batteries.
The Japanese firm unveiled a flexible lithium ion battery at Japanese technology fair Ceatec. The battery could be used in wearables such as watches, fitness bands and smart-clothing.
Its capacity is small, meaning it would not be suitable for power-intensive smartphones at this stage.
Other manufacturers such as LG and Samsung are also putting huge efforts into more flexible technology, be that in batteries, screens or more.
Designed for use in “card-type and wearable devices”, Panasonic’s flexible battery is 0.55mm (0.022in) thick with a maximum “bend” of 25 degrees.
The company said that the battery could “retain its characteristics” even after being repeatedly bent.
Panasonic’s bendable batteries would begin shipping at the end of October, the company said.
TRANSMITTING DATA BY HUMAN TOUCH
Also, at technology fair Ceatec, Panasonic has put on show a data transmission system that can exchange information through human touch.
The prototype human body communication device sends data at up to 100kbps through a radio field on a person’s skin. When they touch an object or person with a suitable transreceiver, data can be exchanged.
At present, the technology is still too big to fit inside something practical, like a wristwatch or smartphone, but Panasonic is confident it can be miniaturized if there is demand for such a system.