Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Touchy-feely screens?

Cambridge-based tech firm NXP is looking at using their SoundVu technology to enhance touch screens like those which have been used in many mobile phones since Apple released the iPhone.  The technique uses a piezo actuator to introduce bending waves into the touch screen.  This effectively makes the screen into a loudspeaker.  Feeding the right signals to this actuator allows the vibrations to be felt on the screen which gives the user haptic feedback as they touch.  The company hopes to be able to simulate the feeling of writing or drawing on a textured surface.  So in the future we may be not only touching our screens to control devices but listening to them and feeling the reaction too.

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