Our hats go off to Sharp for this one. We wrote about this display in late August, but sometimes seeing really is believing. Today at CEATEC Sharp showed off its optical scanning LCD -- a 3.5-inch 320 x 480 portable display with an optical scanner integrated into each pixel, making the screen capable of scanning business cards and other visual information placed on its face. Unfortunately, the early version we tested couldn't read our lower contrast Engadget-blue biz cards, but clear black and white cards scanned quickly. The pixel-integrated optical scanning technique is also able to be used to enabled more robust multi-touch interfaces; instead of a touch-sensitive film (like most touchscreen phones) or a capacitive display (like on the iPhone), these future Sharp displays literally constantly scan for finger touches, enabling multi-touch input with all five fingers simultaneously.
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Sharp shows off multi-touch optical scanning portable LCD