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Epson sees future in digital TV printing

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DQW Bureau
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Tokyo-headquartered Seiko Epson Corporation is in the throes of a brand

repositioning exercise that projects Epson as an imaging company. In an effort

to take the initiative further, earlier, this year, in April the company

restated its mission statement as 'Exceed your vision'.

"Delivering more than customer expectation is what we focus on,"

said Toshio Kimura, Executive VP and CFO, Seiko Epson Corporation at the Epson

Business and Technology Forum-2005 in Hong Kong. The Forum was organized to

showcase the future technologies and applications that will drive it to a

cross-section of media representatives from across South-East Asia.

Talking at the Forum, Kimura delineated the 3i strategy Epson embarked upon

last year. He said the company would expand its portfolio and reach in three

product domains — printers, projectors and displays and has lined up plans up

to year 2007.

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Epson announced that it has developed the world's first flexible TFT-SRAM

(16kbit). The company expects it to be adopted in the near future as a key

component for small, light and flexible devices. An ultra-thin Electro Phoretic

Display (EPD) watch that can be worn like a wrap-around on the wrist was on

display, and is slated to be commercialized by Epson holding company Seiko.

Flexible wall displays, smart cards, RFID tags are some of the other devices on

showcase.

According to Kimura, broadband and digitalization are driving this market.

With a boom in digital content happening the company sees a big opportunity in

digital TV printing. It is taking digital TV printing a step further by

suggesting a business model that enables the consumers to print out information

from TV as and when they want. This involves the complexity of bringing the

broadcaster, TV companies and advertisers together besides the task of setting

the global standards platform for digital TV printing is yet to be finished.

"But it is not a long time away," said Seiichi Hirano, Director and

Chief Executive of the Imaging and Information Products Operation Division,

Seiko Epson Corp. He estimated a time frame of two years to get it off-ground.

The company has already developed the PM-D 1000 TV printer and launched it in

Japan, last year. Epson has also developed Ultra Chrome K3 ink that has

improvements such as a wider color gamut, improved black density, gradation in

dark areas and longer life that can preserve the photo quality for 80 years.

The company spends six percent of its sales on R&D, which amounted to

approximately $ eight billion in the last fiscal. It is slated to start

operations at its new research center in Hiroka, Japan.

Nandita Singh


Hong Kong (The writer was hosted in Hong Kong by Epson)

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