Amazon tablet suppliers leak as E Ink flexes FFS display investment

The pieces of Amazon's Android tablet puzzle continue to coalesce, with the retailer's lengthy parts supplier lists leaking ahead of what's expected to be a commercial launch of two slates later in Q3 2011. As well as NVIDIA's processors, the slates will reportedly use CPT touch sensors, after existing Amazon supplier E Ink – which provides the epaper panels for the Kindle - helped get the display manufacturer's foot in the door.

Previous reports have suggested that Amazon will use a Fringe Field Switching (FFS) display technology sourced from E Ink to rival IPS panels as used in the Eee Pad Transformer and iPad 2. E Ink recently announced plans to invest NT$1.5bn ($52m) into CPT, in return gaining access to the company's 6th-gen production line and thus increasing yield for E Ink subsidiary Hydis' FFS manufacturing.

Amazon's 7-inch tablet – codenamed Coyote - will use a glass-on-glass touch panel, DigiTimes reports, provided to assemblers Quanta by both Wintek and CPT. The retailer is aiming big, too; 2.0m – 2.4m touch panels are expected to be shipped by the end of September.

A singificant number of 10-inch tablets are believed to be in the works, too, with the so-called Hollywood slate – that may use NVIDIA's new quadcore Kal-El chipset – making up the remainder of around 4m Amazon tablet shipments estimated for 2011. Foxconn is believed to be constructing the Hollywood model for Amazon.

Both slates are expected to compliment, rather than replace, the existing monochrome epaper Kindle line, with two new models tipped for release by October 2011. One is expected to be a cheaper model targeted at students – perhaps using the same advert-subsidies as have been successful on the current range – while a second should add a touchscreen layer to the E Ink screen.