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Touch tech cuts cost in high button count apps

Posted: 02 Dec 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:capacitive touch? touch technology? mobile handset?

Leadis' TapTouch technology

Leadis Technology Inc. has announced TapTouch technology, a solution that lowers the cost of capacitive touch implementation in high button count applications. This new technology supports up to 56 independent touch zones with a single 15-channel IC, enabling the integration of large numbers of capacitive touch buttons while keeping system cost and power consumption low.

TapTouch extends the capabilities of the company's LDS60xx family of button ICs to allow product manufacturers to efficiently implement touch technology into high button count applications. Such applications include remote control and telephony applications, where many buttons are inherently required for device operation. Leadis' solution may also be used in screen applicationssuch as mobile handsets and handheld gameswhere functions such as icon selection and gesture recognition are desired.

Unlike traditional architectures using one sensor per button, TapTouch leverages a two-layer sensor array that allows each sensor to support multiple touch zones, often eliminating the need for multiple touch controllers. It also reduces experience-inhibiting first-touch latency by enabling continuous scanning of touch zones without the high power consumption typically associated with low- or no-latency implementations.

TapTouch supports icon selection and gesture-recognition functions without the need for a more expensive full-resolution touchscreen controller. In addition, the solution is compatible with Leadis' integrated LED driver and haptics driver controller offerings.

"Device manufacturers are continuously balancing the needs to meet rising consumer expectations and to keep costs as low as possible," said Alvin Wong, VP and general manager for Leadis' touch business unit. "We believe that the combination of uncompromised user experience, ultralow power consumption and a reduced BOM will quickly drive interest in TapTouch, particularly among the most visionary manufacturers."

TapTouch uses a two-tiered sensor structure, enabling multiple touch zones to share a single sensor input. By interpreting which two sensor lines have been activated, the host processor can determine which unique zone has been touched. Leadis provides reference host code for touch zone determination that may be adapted for a variety of different TapTouch configurations and applications.

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