Hybrid screen hack makes netbooks readable in bright sunlight

If you've ever tried to use a netbook or iPad out in the sun, you'll know that backlit LCD displays get completely washed out the minute you hit them with lots of light. E-Ink displays work in a different way and don't suffer from this problem, so wouldn't it be great to have a screen that combines the best features of both LCD and E-Ink displays?

Originally developed for the One Laptop Per Child program, the Pixel Qi hybrid screen offer the full color and fast motion capabilities of an LCD, with the bright sunlight readability of an E-ink screen.

While you can't currently buy a netbook with this technology already built in, Pixel Qi does sell a 10-1-inch version of their 3Qi display that's a drop in replacement on various netbooks from Samsung and Lenovo. Once installed, the screen will have two operating modes, full power backlit mode for indoor use, and a low power e-reader mode for when you're out catching some rays and want to stay in touch.

At $275 a pop for just the screen, this project will probably appeal mostly to early adopters with a handy screwdriver set, although the actual installation is supposedly a pretty simple drop-in deal. But I wonder if there's some way to stuff one into an iPad with its slightly smaller screen size?

Maker Shed, via PopSci

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