LONDON – Online vendor Amazon.com Inc. has acquired Liquavista NV, a Netherlands based display subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd., for an undisclosed sum, according to multiple reports. The expectation is that Amazon will use the company and its technology to help develop full-color displays for tablets, such as its own Kindle e-reader.
Liquavista was founded in 2006 as a spin off from the Philips Research Labs. It offered an electrowetting display that was energy efficient for applications in e-readers, mobile phones, media players and other mobile devices. Samsung acquired display technology firm Liquavista BV at the beginning of 2011 for an undisclosed price and claimed that the technology saying that while looking better than liquid crystal displays electrowetting displays would consume 10 percent of the battery power of existing display technologies.
Earlier this year, Bloomberg News reported that Samsung had put Liquavista up for sale and was seeking less than $100 million for the business. As well as offering the Kindle e-reader tablet Amazon is expected to launch a smartphone and other consumer electronics items.
A publication about e-readers called The Digital Reader quoted Amazon an unnamed Amazon representative as saying "We are always looking for new technologies we may be able to incorporate into our products over the long term. The Liquavista team shares our passion for invention and is creating exciting new technologies with a lot of potential. It’s still early days, but we’re excited about the possibilities and we look forward to working with Liquavista to develop these displays."