Controlling false-touches is possible

Aug. 31, 2011 | by Flint Bradley

Recently discussed subjects within our company have covered physical accessibility and cosmetic/ergonomic design for people with vision impairments and other disabilities. We’re now exploring how to eliminate false touches on touch screens. It could be that a vision-impaired person is more susceptible to false touches than a person less impaired. However, being visually impaired is only part of the picture. Some touch technologies are more likely to cause a false-touch event than others.

As long as touch screens are used today there will be false touches. But from the industrial design perspective, touch screen enabled products as a whole are each day becoming more modern, easier to clean, and vandal-proof/rugged. Safety is not an option, it is an assumption. On kiosks, fault touches can occur if the screen is too touch sensitive or too slow to manage.

 With the statement that false touches exist depending on certain applications, models and users, I’d like to highlight one of the attributes of technologies with a configurable sensitivity level. By having programmable touch sensitivity, false touches can virtually be eliminated. Not only is the technology getting more adaptable for each market sector or application, it has opened a broader market acceptance and new demands can be more easily met. Appropriate touch sensitivity level can be provided for specific use models and individual users.  

There are technologies that also offer inclusion of filtering, compensation and calibration during touch point calculation and force capture. Foreign materials on the surface are much less likely to affect the touch screen function. My point is that multiple solutions do exist; but depending upon the system requirements they are all different. This is why it’s hard to say what solution is the best.



Topics: Kiosk Design

Flint Bradley / With more than 32 years of electronics industry experience, Flint's held cross-functional roles for fortune 500 to start-up companies. He has a BSEE with an emphasis in Microelectronics Processing and Operations from Arizona State.
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