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Synaptics capacitive sensing kit offers configurability

Posted: 18 Jan 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:interface design? interface solutions? custom interface design? capacitive touch sensing tech? touch sensing tech?

Synaptics Inc. unveiled OneTouch, a configurable solution that enables customers to develop custom interface designs for capacitive buttons and scrolling applications.

According to the capacitive sensing technology provider, OneTouch consists of a family of capacitive sensing chips, GUI-based design and development tools and documentation that takes the customer through the entire process from concept to mass production. The product leverages the company's capacitive interface experience with a focus on design integration and usability considerations, sensitivity tuning and board testing to ensure manufacturability with high yield, Synaptics said.

The OneTouch solution is designed to make Synaptics technology available in an off-the-shelf solution that customers can customize and use in various applications, said company executives. To date, Synaptics technology has been available primarily through custom solutions designed for products such as Apple Computer Inc.'s iPod (Synaptics was reportedly replaced in the iPod design by Cypress Semiconductor in late 2005). Synaptics said its core technology has been used over the last 10 years to provide over 250 million capacitive interface solutions to the PC, mobile phone, and portable digital entertainment markets. The company claims a greater than 65 percent market share in capacitive sensing technology for notebook computers.

"Capacitive touch sensing interfaces have come a long way from the initial touchpad designs in notebooks PCs, with a growing number of OEMs and ODMs across many applications and markets now adopting the technology for different implementations," said Francis Lee, Synaptics president and CEO, in a statement. "While custom module solutions remain essential to a wide range of products and applications, some of these emerging implementations require our customers to have a more streamlined and integrated design process to meet market timing requirements."

The OneTouch solution is available now to qualified customers for button and scrolling applications, Synaptics said. The first generation of products supports up to 16 capacitive buttons, scroll strips, and combinations of buttons and scroll strips, according to the company. Pricing information was not provided.

- Dylan McGrath
EE Times

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