Existing technologies for large-sized touch interfaces are costly and do not offer after-market conversion; almost all touch technology needs to be pre-fabricated. In addition, non-display and 3D touch surfaces are essentially non-existent. A recent invention which allows one to convert an ordinary surface into a touch interface has been developed and prototyped. These surfaces include glass, wood, aluminum and acrylic-materials; found in most everyday objects. The prototype involves the use of low-cost surface-mounted sensors that detect vibrations generated by a finger/stylus tapping on the surface - effectively converting any flat surface into a touch interface.
The novelty of the proposed technology lies in the method of using low-cost vibration sensors to localize a finger tap. Low-cost sensors can be mounted easily and it has the potential to provide a low-cost solution in converting surfaces into a touch interface. In terms of commercial viability, this technology therefore allows one to serve after-market needs such as the conversion of flat panel displays, glass walls etc. to a touch interface which none of the existing technology is capable of. Features include:
This technology is applicable in the following industries:
Current digital signages/directories in shopping malls involve the use of flat panel displays. While these displays allow multimedia digital content to be updated seamlessly via push technology, they are still passive and lack interactivity. The proposed technology will allow end-users to interact with these digital signages so as to provide an immersive experience. In addition to the above, existing technologies for touch interfaces are costly, limited in size and are incapable of serving the after-market needs; existing touch surfaces have to be pre-fabricated and their size and/or functionality cannot be modified after production or shipment. It is therefore timely to convert existing screens to touch interfaces to serve the market needs. In the long term, conversion of existing 3D objects to touch-enabled interfaces will also see an increase in demand in light of the advent in home automation and security technology.