- What Are Touch Panels?
- The Different Touch Panel Types
- Resistive Touch
- Infrared Touch
- Optical Imaging Touch
- Projected Capacitive Touch
- Touch Panel Types in the Professional World
- How to choose a suitable touch panel for your product?
- Final Words
Do you know that touch panel technology was invented in the 60s?
That’s correct. Long before your special smartphone entered the market in the late 00s, touch panels had already been an established technology for nearly four decades.
Touch panels or touchscreens are seen everywhere, from our smartphones to self-serve booths at the airport. It should be no surprise that several touch monitor types exist, given their many uses. Each type of touch panel has its advantages and disadvantages and is suited to specific tasks.
Despite the panels’ simplicity of use, the underlying technology is more complex than it appears, with four different touch panel types in existence.
We’re here to help if you are not clear on exactly what a touch panel is, what the touch panel types are, or how they’re applied in your daily life beyond that of your smartphone.
1. What Are Touch Panels?
Touch panels, also known as touchscreens or touch monitors, allow people to operate computers through direct touch. More specifically, a user’s touch is detected via internal sensors, then translated into an instructional command that parlays into visual function.
2. The Different Touch Panel Types
On the technical side, touch panels are not as cut-and-dry as they seem. Their sense and reaction to touch can widely differ based on their inherent designs. There are four touch panel types in regular use – Resistive, Optical Imaging, Projected Capacitive, and Infrared. Below, we’ll dig into their specifics, including advantages, disadvantages, and real-life product applications.
3. Resistive Touch
Resistive touch panels detect commands through pressure placed on the screen and are cost-effective variants. This pressure sensitivity is generally limited to single-point touch, with a 20-inch full screen, which is fine for many usage cases. These range from styluses to fingertips. As a result, resistive touch panels will remain functional if used correctly, even if a water drop has landed on the screen.
However, many users will find that resistive touch panels are less durable than their competitors due to this versatility. Moreover, this touch panel type cannot have multi-touch functionality depending on the single-point touch. However, resistive touch panels are found in grocery stores, where stylus-based signatures are normally required after credit card purchases.
4. Infrared Touch
Some like it hot, and some don’t. Infrared touch panels fall into the latter category. By setting up a grid of infrared beams across the panel, which may be up to 150-inches, touch is detected through this panel’s disruption.
Although infrared touch panels are durable and support multi-touch functionality, they possess one potential drawback depending on where you sit, literally.
Despite infrared implying heat, infrared touch panels perform poorly in it, particularly in direct sunlight. The infrared light beams can be disrupted by the sun’s rays instead of your fingers in those circumstances. Be sure to place your infrared touch panel device in a suitably dark location.
5. Optical Imaging Touch
Light and disruption are a great way to produce a shadow and design a touch panel type. Optical imaging touch panels are designed to sense touch through the disruption of light strips and infrared cameras. This can be achieved through any input you desire, maximum size, across its 100-inch, from gloves to bare hands.
All in all, optical imaging touch panels are the universal option the touch-based world can offer. The possibilities may truly be endless, from durability to multi-touch and universal input prospects. Although its only disadvantage maybe its non-compact design, common optical imaging touch panel applications include certain interactive whiteboards varieties.
6. Projected Capacitive Touch
Projected capacitive touch panels are the touch panel type for you; if you identify with the phrase, go with what you know.
Projected Capacitive touch panels are known for their high precision and high-speed response times through electrical-based touch detection. They possess multi-touch functionality and can be used within small yet expensive devices. It has proven challenging to scale up to larger sizes due to their underlying technology. Figured it out yet?
Assuming you haven’t or would like to enjoy the gratified feeling associated with being right, allow us to reveal where you interact with projected capacitive touch panels daily – Smart Phones! What’s more is that they are not alone, with tablet computers and GPS devices utilizing projected capacitive touch screens.
7. Touch Panel Types in the Professional World
It would be a mistake to assume that the applications of all these touch panel types are limited to that of consumer-level devices or even those previously mentioned. These touch panel types can be seen throughout everyday life and various industries.
What’s more, in many of these industries, these touch panel types are used less to market products to consumers and more to sell solutions to businesses. Touch-based solutions are always needed regarding finance, manufacturing, retail, medicine, or education. These touch-based solutions play a key role in practices related to industry 4.0 in conjunction with the so-called ‘Internet-of-things or IoT.
These solutions largely offer a form of personnel management in practice. For instance, in hospitals, stores, or banks, these touch panel types can answer basic questions, provide product information, or offer directions based on the user’s needs. On the other hand, when it comes to manufacturing, these solutions enable employee management in the possible form of workplace allocation or attendance tracking.
Touch panels are here to stay. The level of adoption this technology has experienced is remarkable in the four decades since its beginning. They modify how you teach in classrooms and collaborate with your colleagues.
8. How to choose a suitable touch panel for your product?
- Determine what exactly touchscreen you require.
- Define the external dimensions
- Keep in mind the number of pins on a flat cable.
- Remember the polarity
- You need to know the measurements of a new sensor when buying
9. Final Words
We hope that you now have clarity on the specific details of each touch panel type. This knowledge will serve you well, particularly if you are interested in a createxplay selection of touch-based solutions.