To operate a display panel, IT devices like smartphones send a signal first which images should be displayed. Application Processor (AP), which is similar to the Central processing unit (CPU) of PC, is a system on a chip (SoC) designed to support applications running in a mobile operating system. The application processor determines and sends signals, and Flexible Printed Circuit Board (FPCB) is the first component that transports the commanded signal to the display panel.
To understand FPCB better, you first need to know what Printed Circuit Board (PCB) is. Printed circuit board is a circuit component that transports electric signals, and in human terms, it is compared to a nerve. PCB is the primary component widely used in most electric devices, from home appliances to up-to-date mobile communication devices such as smartphones.
Flexible Printed Circuit Board is one of the types of PCB that converted its characteristic from conventional hard PCB to flexible circuit board. When it comes to mobile devices, it has been developed to minimize the sizes to have better portability. For portable devices, the PCB should attach being folded to the backside of the display panel, and thus it requires the characterization of thin and bendable.
Unlike Display Driver IC (DDI), FPCB doesn’t work independently, so that the key function of FPCB is to send a commanded signal from the application processor to display driver IC.
Thanks to the flexibility and lightness, FPCB improves the spatial advantage. It has become an essential part in the era that unveiled mobile devices with various types of form factors.