The most striking new BLU technology in Long Beach was shown in a hotel suite by Novalux, where the company showed a 32" LCD TV with a backlight based on the company's Necsel lasers. Novalux has been aggressively developing these lasers for rear-production (RP) television, where they promise to improve the color gamut and illumination source lifetime of the set. LCD TVs were an obvious next target. In a few months they developed an impressive technology demonstrator, and a company representative reports intense interest from LCD TV and backlight makers.
The laser BLU shown in Long Beach used one red, one blue and one green laser - all in the same 2-4W class being developed the RPTVs. The demo LCD TV exhibited more saturated colors than a comparison unit using traditional CCFLs, and at its current state of development, produced an image that was not as bright. This was understandable as the demo did not optimize the backlight design nor did it adjust the color filters or gamut of the TV.
Laser illumination offers many of the advantages of LED backlighting, but the entire panel can probably be evenly illuminated with three devices instead of - in some configurations - hundreds. It's the potential cost saving that's creating the excitement. Those nicely saturated colors and extended color gamut are a bonus.
Novalux predicts products in two or three years.