Kyocera Corp will make a full-scale entry into the touch panel business. In respect to the resistive touch panel composed of two glass substrates, the company has already commercialized 6.2-inch products and will start mass-producing 5.7-inch products in October 2008.
Kyocera plans to produce touch panels as large as the LCD panels that it mainly manufactures and sells, and the mass production will be started in sequence. They will be sold as touch-integrated LCD panels intended for industrial devices, measuring instruments and medical devices, but will also be sold as a single unit.
The company will mass produce "glass/glass structure" touch panels, which have glass substrates on both the operating side and the body side. Compared with existing "film/glass" touch panels, which use a film substrate on the operating side, the "glass/glass" touch panels are superior in visibility and durability, according to the company.
They are safe for outdoor-use and can be used in high humidity, the company said. Kyocera applied the technology and equipment for manufacturing the LCD panels to mass produce the touch panels.
The glass substrate on the operating side is 0.2mm thick, while the one on the display side is 0.5 to 1.8mm in thickness. The size ranges from 3.5 to 10.4 inches. Available surface treatments include anti-reflection and anti-glare coatings. The substrate thickness, the panel size and the surface treatment can be selected based on client needs. The operating temperature is between -30 to +85°C.
They will be manufactured at the Kagoshima Hayato plant. The production amount will start from 10,000 units per month and is expected to increase to more than 50,000 units per month in three years.
Kyocera will exhibit this touch panel at CEATEC JAPAN 2008, which takes place from Sept 30 to Oct 4, 2008, at Makuhari Messe in Chiba Prefecture, Japan.