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Corning Inc. has edge with touch-screen display glass

Post Time:Jun 01,2009Classify:Glass QuotationView:876

As its primary business strategy, Corning Inc. tries to identify fast-growing markets and position its products to take advantage of that growth.

In the 20th century, the Fortune 500 company successfully executed that strategy with such products as television tube blanks, consumer housewares, optical fiber and flat-panel display glass.

Now it has identified another such market - glass for touch-screen modules in such devices as phones, portable navigation units and computer games.

Corning's Gorilla Glass, designed to withstand the rigors of touch-screen operation, has the potential to become an important revenue generator for the company in the years ahead.

That's because projections by market analysts indicate that the demand for touch-screen modules will grow from $3.6 billion in 2008 to $9 billion by 2015.

That estimate, by DisplaySearch of Austin, Texas, grew out of a survey of more than 170 suppliers of touch-screen products.

"Touch-screen devices are becoming widespread due to ease of use and intuitive interfaces they enable," said Jennifer Colegrove, director of display technologies at DisplaySearch. "Falling prices have also spurred adoption."

About 16 percent of the mobile phones shipped in 2008 contained touch screens. DisplaySearch expects that will climb to 40 percent in 2015.

Just as it positioned its liquid crystal display glass to benefit from the growing market for flat-panel televisions and computer monitors, Corning Inc. has hit the ground running with Gorilla Glass for the exploding touch-screen market.

While touch screens have been concentrated mostly in phones and other small devices, that is about to change, Colegrove says.

"Over the next several years, touch screens will undergo strong growth in large-size applications, such as retail, ticketing, point of information and education and training," she said.

With a successful touch-screen glass already on the market, Corning Inc. should be able to take advantage of the growth in touch-screen sizes, just as it has done with screen sizes in flat-panel televisions and computers.

Glass, of course, represents only a small portion of the cost of a touch-screen display. Even 5 percent of a $9 billion market, however, would total $450 million - a pool of money worth competing for.

Source: Corning Inc. Author: shangyi

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