SID 2004 sizzles along with booming display industry

JUNE 8--The excitement at the 2004 Society for Information (San Jose, CA; www.sid.org) Display Symposium, Seminar and Exhibition (SID 2004), held at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center in Seattle recently, was based on much more than numbers, and the numbers were excellent.

JUNE 8--The excitement at the 2004 Society for Information (San Jose, CA; www.sid.org) Display Symposium, Seminar and Exhibition (SID 2004), held at the Washington State Convention & Trade Center in Seattle recently, was based on much more than numbers, and the numbers were excellent. Overall attendance was 6500, compared to 5600 in 2003, said Bill Klein of Palisades Convention Management, which manages the event for SID. There were 230 exhibitors, compared with 225 last year, Klein said, and those exhibitors rented 470 exhibit booths compared to 452 in 2003. The one-day SID Business Conference drew 705 registrants compared to 404 last year, and attendance at the technical symposium was up 20%. SID is a major international display event and North America's largest trade show and technical conference devoted to displays, display products, display materials and components, and display applications.

While SID's numbers are up substantially, display sales are exploding. Revenue from the sale of LCD panels for the four leading applications is expected to be US $42.3 billion in 2004, up more than 51% from 2003, said Barry Young, SVP and CFO for market-research firm DisplaySearch.

"Telling evidence of the market's prosperity could be seen in the happy faces and positive comments of the attendees and speakers, in the bustling traffic on the show floor, in the generous corporate sponsorship of events, and even in the copious supply of free food, Starbuck's coffee, and bottled water," wrote Sweta Dash, director of LCD and projection research at market-intelligence firm iSuppli/Stanford Resources. Prosperity also funds research, and a record number of papers shared the results of that research in the technical conference.

Some notable trends included the profusion of large LCD panels for television, the ever-increasing size of PDP panels, remarkable technological innovation and increasing image quality in small panels for cell phones and other mobile applications, the showing of flexible displays that seem closer to commercialization, the increasing activity of makers of microcircuits for display applications, and the continually growing importance of touch interfaces. There were even hints of an LCoS resurgence, with impressive 1080-line prototypes from Philips (on the floor) and Brillian (shown off the floor to press and analysts). Samsung showed an impressive 17-in. UXGA active-matrix OLED (AMOLED) prototype, while Philips showed a 13-inch polymer AMOLED fabricated with a 256-nozzle ink-jet printer. The surprise of the show for many observers was a front-projection screen from a Sony division that normally makes recording media. The screen uses a thin-film stack to absorb ambient illumination via destructive interference, but is tuned to reflect light generated by a UHP lamp, according to Sony personnel. The result was impressively high contrast in both bright and dark ambients.

The next SID Symposium will be held in the Hynes Convention Center, Boston, MA, May 22 to 27, 2005. For information, call Mark Goldfarb at (212) 460-8090, ext. 202; fax (212) 460-5460; or e-mail mgoldfarb@pcm411.com. For information on exhibiting, call exhibit sales manager Kate Dickie at (212) 460-8090 ext. 215 or e-mail: kdickie@pcm411.com.


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