New Factory Means Increased Demand for Mirasol Color E-Ink
News that Qualcomm, a microchip manufacturer, is building a $2 billion production plant for the Mirasol display technology means that device makers plan on releasing color e-books.
Mirasol is a technology that has been floating around technology conventions for a while now, but despite its promise of clear, colored digital ink displays and even video playback, as opposed to the monochrome, static e-ink displays of current e-book readers, no company has done anything with it.
Qualcomm's new production facility, to be built in Taiwan and begin volume production in 2012, is an indication that there is real demand for color digital ink screens. Qualcomm already has a Mirasol factory, in a joint venture with Foxlink, but this new facility is completely financed by Qualcomm. Meaning Qualcomm expects demand for Mirasol to increase.
That's partly due to interest from other manufacturers. Apparently Qualcomm already has an unnamed "major client" who is in the design process for a Mirasol device, with a 5.7-inch color display. Early speculation posits that the client may be Amazon, who has already expressed interest in making a color version of the Kindle e-book reader .