Multitouch 'Skin' Transforms Surfaces Into Interactive Screens
A new large-format multi-touch technology launched today by DISPLAX, a developer of interactive technologies, will transform any non-conductive flat or curved surface into a multitouch screen.
The DISPLAX Multitouch Technology, believed to be the first of its kind, has been developed based on a transparent thinner-than-paper polymer film. When applied to glass, plastic or wood, the surface becomes interactive. Significantly, this new multitouch technology can be applied to standard LCD screens as well, making it an attractive choice for LCD manufacturers. The new technology will also be available for audiovisual integrators or gaming platforms to develop innovative products.
The DISPLAX Multitouch Technology dramatically extends the capabilities of the interactive format. It can be applied to flat or curved, opaque as well as transparent surfaces up to three metres across the diagonal. It is hyper sensitive, allowing users to interact with an enabled surface not just by touching it but, for the first time, by blowing on it, opening up new possibilities for future applications. Currently, the technology can detect up to 16 fingers on a 50-inch screen. The number of fingers detected is expected to increase as development progresses.
"Multitouch is the future of interacting with a wide range of technologies. For the commercial markets, the DISPLAX Multitouch Technology will open up new opportunities for many market players, technology vendors as well as businesses," said Miguel Fonseca, chief business officer of DISPLAX. "It is extremely powerful, precise and versatile. Almost everyone who sees it thinks of new applications, from converting LCDs into a multitouch screens, tables into multitouch tables, to creating interactive information screens in stores, shopping malls or public areas, to developing new exciting gaming environments. We already have a number of interesting pilots in progress across Europe."
The technology was primarily developed for commercial environments, but Displax expects potential customers to come from industries as diverse as telecoms, retail, property, broadcast, pharma or finance. DISPLAX expects consumer applications to be developed using the new technology as well.
Based on patent-pending projected capacitive technology, DISPLAX Multitouch Technology uses a controller that works by processing multiple input signals it receives from a grid of nanowires embedded in the film attached to the enabled surface. Each time a finger is placed on the screen or a user blows on the surface, a small electrical disturbance is caused. The micro-processor controller analyses this data and decodes the location of each input on that grid to track the finger and air-flow movements. The DISPLAX Multitouch technology controller combined with a projected capacitive nanowired film is a lightweight and highly scalable solution, ranging from seven inches (18 centimetres) to three metres across the diagonal thus opening up a wide range of commercial applications suitable for indoor or outdoor displays.
DISPLAX works with partners and directly with customers to deliver multi-touch rich-media applications, enabling people to take full advantage of the latest developments. DISPLAX Multitouch Technology will be available in the market with several embedded business applications at no extra cost, designed especially for the kind of installations that interactive technology companies work on. This Apps Pack will allow customers to display photo and video streams, provide users access to Google Maps and social networks, integrate news streams via RSS and play multitouch games. More applications will be available later in 2010 directly from DISPLAX and other developers.
The DISPLAX Multitouch Technology will begin shipping in July 2010.