Im making this summary thread to bring together in one place all of the previous threads and highlight the technology behind transflective sunlight viewable lcd's and touchscreens. If anyone else has any info about this, please post.

THE MP3Car.com store is working on brining this technology to users. Here is a summary from Zip-Lock himself

Quote Originally Posted by Zip-Lock
We will soon have something up on the store. It’s at least three weeks off before we will have anything ready to ship.

The price won’t be cheep for a 7” LCD sunlight readable panel with touch screen. Just to clarify, that won’t be a panel upgrade program, but rather a new panel that has been modified. All units will come with a 90 day warranty against defects.

The components (such as only the LCD or only the touchscreen) cannot be sold individually because the optics must match as a complete package. If the optics do not match the display won't look right or perform to specification.We have plans to sell new in dash monitors with the upgrade. These things take time and am personally working on it expeditiously, but it will still take a matter of weeks.

The problem with upgrading products that people already own is the upgrade process will take a long time, up to six weeks. That could be expedited if you where willing to accept a refurbished LCD panel instead of the one that came with your monitor. Also there are unanswered questions such as will it fit back into a given in dash monitor housing after the upgrade has been done. There are also issues with the touchscreen and retrofitting a new touchscreen controller into an existing housing where it might not fit.
The first batch will be Lilliputs. It remains to be seen if they will fit back in to their housings or not in which case they will be sold as open frame LCDs.

We are only working on the 7" right now. We have plans for other sizes such as 6.5", 8.4 and 10.4" but it's way to premature to talk about it.
DO NOT POST QUESTIONS IN THIS THREAD!! THIS IS FOR INFORMATION PERTAINING TO TRANSFLECTIVE ENHANCEMENTS ONLY!!!

Technical Information
Quote Originally Posted by nmbenson
OK folks here is the deal, recently one of your members contact me concerning a sunlight readable enhancement. After a long discussion with him he suggested I inform you all here so as to remove any misunderstanding concerning mods to LCDs and to dispell some myths about AR (anti-reflective) coatings and polarizer (the glass) mods.

I noticed that some of you were interested in the new 3M technology, I was at that conference and sat in on the SIID meeting concerning the engineering specs at which to implement them. What 3M is offering is similar to transflective technology. So...

Their are two forms of LCD displays:

1) Transmissive LCD - uses backlights (1 - 6 depending upon size) these backlights force light through the LCD module creating the color display you see. However when a light source say the sun is imposed from outside that light transmissisity is diffused causing color clarity loss. Additionally manufacturers include a light collimating layer to try and reduce this and improve light transmissivity, the byproduct therein is glare.

2) Reflective LCD - no backlights used, the polarizer concentrates light into a straight line to be reflected of highly poloshed tiny mirrors in the back of the LCD (where backlights would be) this light then exits through the lcd creating a sunlight readable LCD. Problems: due the design the pot pitch (viewing angle) is decreased immensly, and in low light environments the display is all but readable.

The only option to blend these two technologies was in the 1000's a few years ago based mainly for military and industrial applications. This technology was called transflective enhancement.

Given this information, and the inherent costs in adding this to a lets say Shap Aquos HDTV LCD was that for any large size 22" and up would cost 1000's still. However in the smaller displays it is available for much less and the American market reallyt has no drive to make this a standard for manufacture.

Moving on...

Your LCD you are using is simply put not made by lilliput or whatever brandname on the bezel. Even a toshiba desktop lcd wont have a toshiba panel in it, I know it sounds strange but the industry uses the cheapest product for manufacturing. Very common for lets say Sony makes a desktop lcd, but they use an LG display, then 6 months later for the exact same model number of monitor they use a toshiba display, then 6 months later another. The only thing that matters is for production is the final specs and many times competitor lcd manufacturers make same spec pieces then bid on large production lines. So it is more important to know what LCD you are using rather than the brand name thats on the bezel. Additionally you can buy open frame LCDs and request specific panels with specific specs from companies like Bell Micro or Avnet. FYI though, make sure you explain the video input you require and that you will need a controller board and inverter (OSD board optional)

On to coatings...

AR Coating - simply adds a layer to an existing LCD that is as sinmply defined antireflective. Some claim that with this increases battery life (for laptops and cel phone) which is a little missleading. The enhancement does little more than reduce glare, in reducing glair you could reduce the backlight output, in doing this you reduce power consumption. So it only reduces power use indirectly, additionally it does improve overall readability in two ways:

1) less glare by way of slightly matted coor added (you can't see it though)

2) less glare in reducing the viewing angle (pot pitch), with an AR coating you remove the ability for objects that reflect light to be seen in a reflection on the display... ex: hold an LCD with an AR coating directly in front of you, you may be able to see a light reflection of yourself but nothing else, hold the lcd at a 30 degree angle and it will look like there is no AR coating. This is because the AR coating has reduced the angles at which light can be reflected off the polarizer itself.

With all this brings me to my point...

The solution used in current markets of POS (point of sale systems like at McDonalds etc...) Cell phones in asia, military applictaions, and medical displays is a transflective enhancement. A transflective display in short is a hybrid of the two types of LCD's listed above... however the problem lies therein is cost.

Transflective LCD - a process of removing the polarizer (in a clean room (you know white neumaticly sealed suits like at NASA)) adding a (sometimes 3M) AR coating to the interior layer of the lcd, and adding a reflective layer albeit transmissive film (like a two way mirror or one way glass) in front of the backlight, ie:

backlight > one way light coating > lcd > AR coating > polarizer > AR coating

this diagram is quite simplified however you should get the idea.

OK now that that is out of the way, on to touch screens...

The touch screens you currently use that are stock or aftermarket are... to put it mildly the biggest pieces of mother******* s*** that have ever come from companies such as 3M. The technology is so old it makes me sick when I think about it. The touchscreens you have on a store bought or internet purchased lcd cost somewhere around $15 dollars wholesale and are crap. They reduce visibility because of poor transmissivity due to adding another particle matted layer, and add to glare because they are not designed to ever be in outdoor environments. But first the 3 most common types of touchscreens:

1) Resistive - physical touch moves the the screen physically and is registered using an algorythm to the OS

2) Capacitive - means only an antity holding an electric charge can cue the screen to react (human touch or those little pens with a wire attached)

3) Infrared - infrared lights measure xy coordinates (cool stuff but anything can make it react)

Given this info now, if you require a touchscreen (which I gather 90% of you do), you can improve your readability by purchasing a much better touchscreen, but the problem again is price, they tend to be more expenseive... a lot more.

In my business the most common need in my experience has been for GPS devices, Cell phones, or Auto LCDs that are displays that would benefit the consumer best; but alas the American market is always leaps and bounds behind asia in consumer technology. This I leave for a political forum...

So I come here to let you know that there is a solution for your applications however it can be slightly costly. And until you see the finsihed result seems like too much. But if you can imagine an LCD that actually gets brighter in DIRECT sunlight? It can be done.
A preliminary review of the technology is summarized in this thread

CLICK HERE TO SEE THREAD

A final Review with the enhancement completed on a Xenarc TS is summarized in this thread

CLICK HERE TO SEE THREAD