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Hitachi Touchscreen Allows Use of Gloves, Pens

Hitachi Displays has reportedly created a projection-type, multi-touch panel capable of detecting cloth, plastic and other insulators, eliminating the need for direct skin-to-surface electrical contact.

For consumers, the new Hitachi display means users can select icons on the screen using gloves, a fingernail, and even use a plastic pen for handwritten input. Previously projection-type designs only worked with bare skin and special styluses.

According to the specs, the new display has a 10-inch size limit, allows only two to three points at a time, provides a 10ms to 16ms response time (depending on the screen size), and allows 90-percent of the light through from the screen underneath. Power consumption and durability is the same as conventional projection-type panels.

Nikkei Electronics Asia reports that Hitachi wouldn't disclose the technology behind the new display, however engineers made sure that its thickness and size remained consistent with current touch screens even with the added components for detecting insulating objects. Hitachi said the new screen also uses new algorithms for detection.

Currently Hitachi is offering samples for evaluation. The company hopes to sell both touch panels and complete modules with LCD panels included. Additional reports also indicate that the display could make its way to Apple's iOS devices in 2011, however it's likely to be incorporated into every touch screen device in the next year.

  • gorillateets
    So it is sensitive to touch through force rather than detecting the electricity from your fingertips. I think the same tech is in my crappy tom tom.
  • Pyroflea
    Non capacitive touch screens have been out forever... My 2 year old HTC works fine using pretty much anything as a stylus. I've used pens, pencil erasers... I must be missing something though.
  • Zoonie
    You guys are talking about resistive touchscreens. Resistive touchscreens can't do true multitouch. This can.
  • house70
    "Previously projection-type designs only worked with bare skin and special styluses"...
    you meant styli.(Oxford Dictionary)

    Multitouch non-capacitive screen...yeah but better have a better detection sensitivity than a resistive.
  • walkingasd
    well....time to start buying shares
  • pravus
    I seen these at SAE Convergence or something much similar and it seemed pretty neat.
  • MxM
    The question is if it is soft, scratchy plastic surface or not. The advantage of current capacitive screens is that they are as hard as glass, i.e. non-scratchy.
  • geoffs
    Or, you can simply use gloves that work with capacitive touch screens, such as Agloves, or adapt your existing gloves using conductive thread Instructables
  • reprotected
    Like the DS never had this technology.
  • adamboy64
    reprotectedLike the DS never had this technology.
    True, it doesn't.