Amazon to build new Kindle tablets, potentially with fringe field switching display touchscreens that may or may not mimic the screens found in devices like the Nook Color. Rather than replacing the Kindle e-book reader, the tablet will be introduced as a new device because as Amazon plans to further cut the Kindle's price in order to push the device into education and consumer markets. They'll promote the tablet PC "using its advantage in software and content resources to challenge iPad 2".
Asian trade publication DigiTimes just quoted supply chain sources claiming that the online retailer commissioned contract manufacturer Quanta Computer to build a tablet PC device:
Taiwan-based notebook maker Quanta Computer has recently received OEM orders from Amazon for its reported tablet PC and the device will also receive full support from Taiwan-based electrophoretic display (EPD) maker E Ink Holdings (EIH) for supplying touch panel as well as providing its Fringe Field Switching (FFS)* technology, according to sources from upstream component makers.
Quanta will produce up to 800,000 tablet units during the peak season, DigiTimes wrote. The report goes on to note that Quanta is expected to ship the tablet by the second half of this year. Quanta Computer is also a manufacturing partner of Research In Motion, Sony, Apple and other established brands. They currently manufacture MacBooks for the Cupertino firm.
*What is FFS?
Known as fringe field switching (FFS) until 2003, advanced fringe field switching is a technology similar to IPS or S-IPS offering superior performance and colour gamut with high luminosity. AFFS is developed by Hydis Technologies Co.,Ltd, Korea (formally Hyundai Electronics, LCD Task Force).
AFFS-applied notebook applications minimize colour distortion while maintaining its superior wide viewing angle for a professional display. Colour shift and deviation caused by light leakage is corrected by optimizing the white gamut which also enhances white/grey reproduction. [Wikipedia]