E-paper technology has the advantage of offering readability like printed paper. The brighter the environment, the better the contrast. In the dark, you need a light source to illuminate the display from the front.
The energy requirement is unbeatable: It is zero for a stationary display, so only the peripheral electronics need to be powered by the energy source. The principle is quasi-stationary; the position of electrically charged beads is changed. To change the content, a voltage is applied in whose field the beads reorient themselves. The level and curve shape of the voltage is specified by the manufacturer and depends on the temperature. Especially for displays with multiple colors, this process takes several seconds, so this technology is not suitable for displaying moving content.
The level of complexity of an e-paper display ranges from a simple bar graph for consumer applications such as water filters, to seven-segment displays with graphic symbols, to full graphic displays. Displays that can show another color as an accent in addition to light and dark are popular. Red and yellow are bright and attract attention.
The backplane of an e-paper display can be a glass substrate, but also plastic. The latter are bendable and can be attached to curved surfaces, such as those found in wearables for sports and medicine.
Control from the system side is simple and can be done via a serial interface (SPI) from any microcontroller. There are special drive ICs that also generate the voltage required to polarize the beads on the chip.
We supply a wide range of e-paper displays, from monochrome to 3-color and full color from 1" to 13.3".