Innolux had been searching for different haptic solutions for its touch displays to enrich the user experience. Until the company engaged with Zytronic’s Taiwanese representative, Chris Su, the Innolux engineering team had yet to achieve a suitable tactile solution for their rugged touch displays designed for self-service kiosks and other public displays. Following the engagement, Innolux created an innovative multi-haptic control panel, and Zytronic provided the missing tactile dimension to the touchscreen.
The Innolux concept incorporates a 13in customised ZyBrid multitouch sensor with precision-engineered 3D surface features, machined in 4mm thick toughened glass, to guide the user’s fingertips to the appropriate position on the screen. Zytronic’s proprietary ZXY500 controller delivers multitouch functionality and supports complex gestures including, contactless ‘hover’ touch plus palm rejection, high noise immunity and millisecond fast speed of operation.
On the surface of the touchscreen, using its latest 5-axis CNC (computer numeric controlled) glass machining equipment, Zytronic machined precise, polished “dimples”, grooves and a dial into the glass. Precision machining the tactile finger guides into the glass surface, rather than drilling through and mounting physical dials, buttons and sliders means that it is far easier to create a waterproof, hygienic user interface with fewer exposed moving parts – enhancing reliability.
“These machined features can be located around the periphery of the display or over the LCD itself,” says Chris Su. “Zytronic offers this tactile glass touch sensor technology in a variety of different glass types, including anti-glare, anti-reflective and even anti-microbial.”
“We integrated touch-driven vibrotactile actuators behind the distinguishing glass structures for versatile haptic feedback, making it more intuitive to use,” says Ming Huang Chen, Innolux’s Section Manager. “With both tactile and vibration feedback, the user can not only differentiate between the engraved surface features and flat areas but also feel a variety of high fidelity vibrotactile feedbacks, for instance, a ‘click’ feeling. In some use cases, we can now replace mechanical buttons which are usually mounted around the display panel, with this kind of idea.”
With this new surface touch and tactility capability, Innolux were proud to receive a Gold Award at the Touch Taiwan 2021 exhibition. The company considers that control panels are the main application area for this technology, for example, in medical applications where the operator wants to increase or decrease the gain of the scanner. Medical imaging is another example; using machined dials or ‘joggle wheels‘ to maintain the rotational movement of the function allows the user to take their eyes off the control panel and look at the image on the main display. Mixing and lighting desks can also benefit from joggle wheels and sliders to add position and tactile feedback areas. They can also be used on CCTV control panel systems to control the remote camera zoom in/out function or on casino games to allow players to intuitively control the console functions on a virtual button deck while focusing their eyes on the main, upright screen before them.