A History of Touchscreens (and What’s Coming Next)

Back in 1994, when Friends dominated television and Ace of Base was the top musical group on the radio, IBM unveiled the Simon, a mobile phone with all the delicate aesthetics of a brick.

But the Simon was remarkable for one major reason besides its one-hour battery: it had a touchscreen--kind of. It utilized resistive touch, which meant the screen had to be physically pressed to interact with the electrical layers beneath it and complete a circuit. The behemoth phone required a stylus to operate (check out this demonstration of the magnificent stylus action), but it was still a leap forward. The Simon predated the iPhone by 13 years, and in the meantime various manufacturers utilized resistive touch for PDAs and keyboards. The first capacitive display--which uses the electrical charge in a human touch to detect commands--was released by LG in its Prada smartphone. The capactive display meant phonescreens didn't have to flex, and they were much more responsive than resistive touch. Though the iPhone wasn't the first to use capacitive touch, it did set the standard for mobile devices and meant that if a smartphone was to compete in the market, it needed a touchscreen.

Moving Forward


One interesting development came this year from Cypress Semiconductor, which has released an automotive touchscreen that is waterproof and able to be manipulated even with gloved hands. This may not seem particularly fascinating, but it's remarkable that the screen can withstand the tremendous electromagnetic interference found in cars. It's also worth noting that waterproof operation is a step forward as well, since there are very few touchscreens that operate with water interaction (an iPhone won't, but some Androids will).

And then of course came Apple's contribution to touchscreen innovation: pressure sensitive capacitive touch. It first came with Force Touch in its keyboards and the Apple Watch. Force Touch includes a haptic feedback engine that makes it seem as though the display is moving downwards, when in reality the haptic feedback pushes back at the user.


The innovation in pressure sensitivity was manifested again in the new iPhone 6s, which features 3D touch (a more sensitive version of Force Touch; no one's going to be able to keep the terms straight). And yet, 3D touch still isn't present in the new iPad Pro or in any of the new Macs. In fact, true pressure sensitivity has yet to be fully integrated into computers.


Designers have unlimited possibilities when it comes to the future of touchscreens. Users want to feel the clothes they're shopping for online or transmit the textures in a picture across platforms like Instagram. Technology like that being developed to add sensation to prosthetic limbs could be utilized to imbue mobile devices with new tactile sensations as well. And faster processors would allow for real-time manipulation of synthetic touch. Then there's the virtual reality market: it's about to explode, but what would make it really sensational (pardon the pun) would be the addition of touch response. Touchscreens may go away altogether someday, but in the meantime, designers have an obligation to bridge the gap between a glass screen and the nuanced senses of the everyday world. 
Previous
Next Post »
My photo

Hi, I`m Sostenes, Electrical Technician and PLC`S Programmer.
Everyday I`m exploring the world of Electrical to find better solution for Automation. I believe everyday can become a Electrician with the right learning materials.
My goal with BLOG is to help you learn Electrical.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Label

KITAIFA NEWS KIMATAIFA MICHEZO BURUDANI SIASA TECHNICAL ARTICLES f HAPA KAZI TU. LEKULE TV EDITORIALS ARTICLES DC DIGITAL ROBOTICS SEMICONDUCTORS MAKALA GENERATOR GALLERY AC EXPERIMENTS MANUFACTURING-ENGINEERING MAGAZETI REFERENCE IOT FUNDAMENTAL OF ELECTRICITY ELECTRONICS ELECTRICAL ENGINEER MEASUREMENT VIDEO ZANZIBAR YETU TRANSDUCER & SENSOR MITINDO ARDUINO RENEWABLE ENERGY AUTOMOBILE SYNCHRONOUS GENERATOR ELECTRICAL DISTRIBUTION CABLES DIGITAL ELECTRONICS AUTOMOTIVE PROTECTION SOLAR TEARDOWN DIODE AND CIRCUITS BASIC ELECTRICAL ELECTRONICS MOTOR SWITCHES CIRCUIT BREAKERS MICROCONTROLLER CIRCUITS THEORY PANEL BUILDING ELECTRONICS DEVICES MIRACLES SWITCHGEAR ANALOG MOBILE DEVICES CAMERA TECHNOLOGY GENERATION WEARABLES BATTERIES COMMUNICATION FREE CIRCUITS INDUSTRIAL AUTOMATION SPECIAL MACHINES ELECTRICAL SAFETY ENERGY EFFIDIENCY-BUILDING DRONE NUCLEAR ENERGY CONTROL SYSTEM FILTER`S SMATRPHONE BIOGAS POWER TANZIA BELT CONVEYOR MATERIAL HANDLING RELAY ELECTRICAL INSTRUMENTS PLC`S TRANSFORMER AC CIRCUITS CIRCUIT SCHEMATIC SYMBOLS DDISCRETE SEMICONDUCTOR CIRCUITS WIND POWER C.B DEVICES DC CIRCUITS DIODES AND RECTIFIERS FUSE SPECIAL TRANSFORMER THERMAL POWER PLANT cartoon CELL CHEMISTRY EARTHING SYSTEM ELECTRIC LAMP ENERGY SOURCE FUNDAMENTAL OF ELECTRICITY 2 BIPOLAR JUNCTION TRANSISTOR 555 TIMER CIRCUITS AUTOCAD C PROGRAMMING HYDRO POWER LOGIC GATES OPERATIONAL AMPLIFIER`S SOLID-STATE DEVICE THEORRY DEFECE & MILITARY FLUORESCENT LAMP HOME AUTOMATION INDUSTRIAL ROBOTICS ANDROID COMPUTER ELECTRICAL DRIVES GROUNDING SYSTEM BLUETOOTH CALCULUS REFERENCE DC METERING CIRCUITS DC NETWORK ANALYSIS ELECTRICAL SAFETY TIPS ELECTRICIAN SCHOOL ELECTRON TUBES FUNDAMENTAL OF ELECTRICITY 1 INDUCTION MACHINES INSULATIONS ALGEBRA REFERENCE HMI[Human Interface Machines] INDUCTION MOTOR KARNAUGH MAPPING USEUL EQUIATIONS AND CONVERSION FACTOR ANALOG INTEGRATED CIRCUITS BASIC CONCEPTS AND TEST EQUIPMENTS DIGITAL COMMUNICATION DIGITAL-ANALOG CONVERSION ELECTRICAL SOFTWARE GAS TURBINE ILLUMINATION OHM`S LAW POWER ELECTRONICS THYRISTOR USB AUDIO BOOLEAN ALGEBRA DIGITAL INTEGRATED CIRCUITS FUNDAMENTAL OF ELECTRICITY 3 PHYSICS OF CONDUCTORS AND INSULATORS SPECIAL MOTOR STEAM POWER PLANTS TESTING TRANSMISION LINE C-BISCUIT CAPACITORS COMBINATION LOGIC FUNCTION COMPLEX NUMBERS ELECTRICAL LAWS HMI[HUMANI INTERFACE MACHINES INVERTER LADDER DIAGRAM MULTIVIBRATORS RC AND L/R TIME CONSTANTS SCADA SERIES AND PARALLEL CIRCUITS USING THE SPICE CIRCUIT SIMULATION PROGRAM AMPLIFIERS AND ACTIVE DEVICES BASIC CONCEPTS OF ELECTRICITY CONDUCTOR AND INSULATORS TABLES CONDUITS FITTING AND SUPPORTS CONTROL MOTION ELECTRICAL INSTRUMENTATION SIGNALS ELECTRICAL TOOLS INDUCTORS LiDAR MAGNETISM AND ELECTROMAGNETISM PLYPHASE AC CIRCUITS RECLOSER SAFE LIVING WITH GAS AND LPG SAFETY CLOTHING STEPPER MOTOR SYNCHRONOUS MOTOR AC METRING CIRCUITS APPS & SOFTWARE BASIC AC THEORY BECOME AN ELECTRICIAN BINARY ARITHMETIC BUSHING DIGITAL STORAGE MEMROY ELECTRICIAN JOBS HEAT ENGINES HOME THEATER INPECTIONS LIGHT SABER MOSFET NUMERATION SYSTEM POWER FACTORS REACTANCE AND IMPEDANCE INDUCTIVE RESONANCE SCIENTIFIC NOTATION AND METRIC PREFIXES SULFURIC ACID TROUBLESHOOTING TROUBLESHOOTING-THEORY & PRACTICE 12C BUS APPLE BATTERIES AND POWER SYSTEMS ELECTROMECHANICAL RELAYS ENERGY EFFICIENCY-LIGHT INDUSTRIAL SAFETY EQUIPMENTS MEGGER MXED-FREQUENCY AC SIGNALS PRINCIPLE OF DIGITAL COMPUTING QUESTIONS REACTANCE AND IMPEDANCE-CAPATIVE RECTIFIER AND CONVERTERS SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS SERRIES-PARALLEL COMBINATION CIRCUITS SHIFT REGISTERS BUILDING SERVICES COMPRESSOR CRANES DC MOTOR DRIVES DIVIDER CIRCUIT AND KIRCHHOFF`S LAW ELECTRICAL DISTRIBUTION EQUIPMENTS 1 ELECTRICAL DISTRIBUTION EQUIPMENTS B ELECTRICAL TOOL KIT ELECTRICIAN JOB DESCRIPTION LAPTOP THERMOCOUPLE TRIGONOMENTRY REFERENCE UART WIRELESS BIOMASS CONTACTOR ELECTRIC ILLUMINATION ELECTRICAL SAFETY TRAINING FILTER DESIGN HARDWARE INDUSTRIAL DRIVES JUNCTION FIELD-EFFECT TRANSISTORS NASA NUCLEAR POWER SCIENCE VALVE WWE oscilloscope 3D TECHNOLOGIES COLOR CODES ELECTRIC TRACTION FEATURED FLEXIBLE ELECTRONICS FLUKE GEARMOTORS INTRODUCTION LASSER MATERIAL PID PUMP SEAL ELECTRICIAN CAREER ELECTRICITY SUPPLY AND DISTRIBUTION MUSIC NEUTRAL PERIODIC TABLES OF THE ELEMENTS POLYPHASE AC CIRCUITS PROJECTS REATORS SATELLITE STAR DELTA VIBRATION WATERPROOF