E Ink has announced the launch of a new color ePaper technology. The new Triton Imaging Film technology has been in the works for a while, but now that E Ink says it’s ready for prime time, it’s likely that we’ll start to see color eBook Readers and related devices soon.

Yesterday device maker Hanvon announced that it would launch a 10 inch eReader using the new E Ink Triton color technology. I suspect others will follow soon.

Like black and white ePaper, color E Ink displays are designed to use very small quantities of power. Basically the screen only draws power from a device’s battery when you’re “turning” a page. It doesn’t use any energy at all to display a static image on the screen. The new technology is also about 20 percent faster, which should lead to quicker page turns, menu selection, and other on-screen actions.

What you won’t see is ePaper displays capable of playing full motion video or incredibly brilliant images. While a typical LCD display can handle hundreds of thousands or millions of colors, the E Ink Triton screens will be able to display 16 levels of gray and “thousands” of colors. On the bright side, they’ll be readable outdoors in direct sunlight.

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