The old-school mechanical displays you’d find at airports listing arrival and departure times have long since been replaced with flat screen TVs. They’re not gone forever, though, thanks to one company who thinks flip-disc displays deserve a revival.
The F21 Thread Screen used spindles wrapped in coloured string to create giant mosaic images. The company’s new Flip-Disc Display System, which uses thousands of tiny mechanical flipping discs that can toggle between two different colours, is a lot simpler but no less captivating to see in action.
If you’ve ever seen displays like this in action before, you know it can take a few moments for the entire image to refresh as every last disc flips over. But by re-engineering the technology that’s been around since the 1960s, Breakfast’s new flip disc system can hit refresh rates of almost 30 frames per second, making it possible to display low-resolution but full-motion video.
Does Breakfast intend for airports and other travel hubs to once again upgrade (or downgrade) all of their display technologies to its new Flip-Disc panels? No. But for well-financed companies looking for a cool way to decorate a wall in their offices, these 43-by-43cm modular panels can be assembled into a massive kinetic display that’s sure to impress visitors, and distract workers.
The current pricing plan requires a minimal of 15 Flip-Disc panels to be purchased, with a price tag that lands somewhere in the low six-figures. But as the company scales up production as orders roll in, it also plans to eventually introduce smaller and cheaper versions that could appeal to homeowners looking for a unique way to decorate a room.