EFY: What, according to you, are the top trends in display technology that design engineers should look out for in 2012?
KN: I think, probably it is best represented if you look at where we are going in the consumer domain in Pico (projection). I think we do want to continue to make the technology to be brighter and more efficient so it uses either less power – whether that power comes from a plug on the wall or whether it comes from a battery – or using the same amount of power bring brighter and just having got more lumens or a brighter image, I think, helps whether it’s in a classroom. Clearly that’s what has made the difference for us and the key differentiator we have in cinema technology when we light the biggest and the brightest in the world. I think when people see that is when they go watch a 3D movie. You need to have a very, very bright screen in order to create that 3D effect. So we will continue to work on brightness which will help us here.
I think a long term trend which you are going to see is what we will call interactivity. So with being able to interact with the projected image – we have done some of that with our what we call our point black technology, being able to use it in classrooms and being able to stay away from the screen and to use essentially a pen device and being able to gesticulate standing with an interactive white board. I think more and more you’ll see through gesturing or some sort of interactive with the projected image. And I think that is going to be a long term trend. We talked about the brightness, efficiency and interactivity.
And a trend that we are going to see in DLP, and we have started to see it a little bit by now, is using it for non-display applications. We use the DLP chip in optical networking, we use it in medical applications and 3D measurement. I think there is a whole wide area of new applications and capabilities that will pick up. And as I say fundamentally, when you give smart engineers the ability to manipulate hundreds of thousands of millions of mirrors individually on a wide spectrum of light, engineers can be very creative and figure out new applications and where they use of that technology.
EFY: The devices that you talked about, let’s say this iPhone device with Pico projection that is compatible with the iPhone. How soon will those devices be available in India?
KN: There are several products that have Pico projection in them already available in India. There are a few of these laptop accessories. There are some cellphones that will become available in the beginning of the next year that have DLP technology announced. The Nikon digital still camera is available here. It features DLP projection. Some Sony Camcorders feature DLP projection. So there are quite a few products probably approximately 20 products in the market right now. Inside India we really started out with Pico projection when I think it was first made available in about 2008 in really small numbers and we have seen considerable growth, nearly exponential numbers in past few years. It’s similar to the general market. One trend that we have shown here. Last year the market grew over a 100 per cent, we expect it to grow a hundred per cent for the next several years coming over, in Pico projection. The general answer is you’ll see more and more products, especially given that as India moves into a larger and larger consumer market, I think you will see more and more recent products here.