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Touchscreen fever gets hotter in 2010

Posted: 20 Jan 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:touchscreen? mobile phone? touch panel?

The once provider-oriented IT device market is now changing into consumer-oriented with great emphasis user-friendliness. Following navigation products, PDAs, game consoles and mobile phones are now embracing touch sensors and touchscreens. Touch sensing technology used to be applied only to high-end mobile phones, mobile devices or digital consumer devices. But this year, the touch fever is expected to conquer bigger markets.

Touch phones still rule
Ever since Apple launched its iPhone, major Korea companies have been competitively introducing their own cellphones and smart phones with touchscreens. The 2010 touchscreen panel market is expected to continue to grow around the touch phones, from which its greatest demand comes.

According to iSuppli, the global touchscreen module market in 2010 is projected to record $4.81 billion, a 15 percent increase from the previous year. Among this, the handset touchscreens will take up 31.1 percent, continuing to lead the market. Applications such as game/entertainment, navigation system, MP3/PMP, PC, etc., are projected to take up 5 to 10 percent, respectively.

Rise of capacitive-type
Meanwhile, 2009 was the year capacitive-type touchscreen, with its advantage in multi-touch feature, had risen over resistive-type. "Overall trend shows that, in terms of method, market for capacitive-type that enables multi-touch feature will become bigger than that of resistive type," according to Yong-Hyun Han, CEO of GreenChip Inc..

According to the recent report by LIG Investment & Securities, the capacitive-type market is projected to show rapid growth, from $210 million in 2008 to $380 million in 2009 and $570 million in 2010. This is expected to steadily bring down the market share of resistive type from 69 percent in 2008 to 59 percent in 2009 and 57 percent in 2010.

ATLab Inc. developed Touchware to accelerate the popularization of capacitive type. Bang-Won Lee, president of ATLab, said that the Touchware enables module, chip and cellphone companies to execute independent cooperation. "This innovation in supply chain allows you to differentiate your mobile phones even with the same modules and sensor chips," he said. Having successfully developed both capacitive type and resistive type digital multi-touch technology last year, ATLab plans to develop 'R-Plus-C' technology, which will boast best of both technologies.

Touch PCs
In 2009, the introduction of Windows 7, Microsoft's new OS with multi-touch feature, led to the launch of a host of new touchscreen PCs by local companies including TriGem Computer, Samsung Electronics, etc. With the PC market opening its doors to touchscreen, many PC display panel manufacturers are expected to enter the touchscreen module market in 2010.

- EE Times-Korea

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