The above image is supposed to be an animated gif, and the animation shows off a new type of screen made by E-ink.

Taiwan based Sino Pac Bank and the Miramar department store are using E-ink’s SURF screen to promote their new credit card offer, and it’s not the usual E-ink screen that you might find on a eReader.

SURF stands for Segmented, Ultra-thin, Rugged and Flexible. Instead of individual pixels, SURF screens are divided into segments. Do you see how on the lower part of the sign there are pink, green, orange, etc rectangles? Each of those is lying on top of a different segment. When the segment flashes from black to white, the sign looks like it is lighting up.

I’m sure you’re wondering how a black and white display can flash color. It can’t. There’s a color layer printed on transparent plastic, and it’s lying on top of the SURF screen.  That second layer is removable, and can be swapped out. The underlying SURF screen is reusable.

Do you recall the Esquire E-ink cover from a couple years ago? That was an early example of a SURF display. Here’s a video which should give you a better idea of how a SURF display works.

via E-ink