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Sensor with multi-touch taps low-cost markets

Posted: 29 Feb 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:sensor  multi touch  capacitive touchscreen 

Cypress Semiconductor Corp. rolls the SLIM (Single-Layer Independent Multitouch), its single-layer touchscreen sensor solution with multi-touch capability that is said to deliver high-performance touchscreen accuracy and responsiveness with a true single-layer sensor panel, drastically reducing the cost of the most expensive component of the touchscreen.

The SLIM sensor enables low-cost touchscreen phones to offer users the ability to perform gestures such as pinch, zoom, flick, drag, swipe and other gestures requiring more than two fingers.

Increasingly, capacitive touchscreens are viewed as a differentiator for mobile devices. Many lower-priced "feature phones" do not offer capacitive touchscreens today because of the cost, or offer only rudimentary touch features. The SLIM sensor opens up new "feature phones" and lower-cost smartphones to capacitive touchscreens that include popular multi-finger gesture interfaces.

SLIM is a true single-substrate, single layer ITO touchscreen sensor. Unlike competitive solutions, it requires no additional insulation layers or bridges, according to the company. This is said to reduce the cost versus multi-touch sensors by roughly 40 per cent, and also greatly reduces the thickness of the sensor module. SLIM can be deposited directly on the cover glass to create the thinnest touchscreen phones ever.

The SLIM sensor pattern is even more unique in that it can eliminate the requirement for a side-bezel, normally about 2mm on each side of the end product. This feature enables borderless display modules that allow OEMs to use larger displays without changing the form-factor of the phone.

According to the company, the combination of the SLIM sensor and its Gen4 controller will allow the world's slimmest touchscreen devices, as Gen4's industry-leading noise immunity enables sensor-on-lens configurations that are directly laminated to the display with no shielding or air gaps.

Traditional capacitive touchscreens use a two-layer sensor to deliver the accuracy and linearity required for today's user experience. Cypress has developed proprietary algorithms that interface with a true single-layer sensor with no bridges to deliver two-layer performance for an unparalleled combination of user experience and cost sensitivity. The removal of this second sensor layer can save mobile device manufacturers 40 per cent or more on sensor costs, which is often the most expensive part of the touchscreen module.

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