What is a touchscreen on a smartphone

Posted by: 14.07.2018

Smartphone users who speak English poorly are perplexed when they hear the name “touchscreen” - what is this part of the phone? Usually, this is the name for any touchscreen, regardless of which device it is installed on. Currently, such displays are used not only for mobile gadgets, but also embedded in various self-service terminals.


What is a touchscreen?

This term is derived from the merger of the English words 2: touch and screen, which means "touch screen". This display responds to touch and allows you to simplify the management of equipment. However, it is worth distinguishing several types of equipment, since the principle of their work is not quite similar.

What is the touchscreen

In modern gadgets, for example on an iPhone, they install capacitive and projective-capacitive displays. The latter type can be called more advanced, since it is able to read a certain number of touches simultaneously. By themselves, such touchscreens are glass panels with a layer of resistive material and electrodes.

There are also displays on which a flexible membrane is applied. Micro insulators are located between it and glass, pressing on which provokes a change in resistance. The controller fixes it and converts it into coordinates, as a result, the device is controlled.

The main difference between these types of technologies is that the capacitive display does not respond to the touch of any object or even a simple stylus, which is not the case with a resistive touchscreen. Thus, blocking a smartphone on it works much better than on its outdated “colleague”.

The principle of operation of different screens

There is a total 3 type Touch Screen, 2 of which have already been briefly described:

  • capacitive;
  • wave;
  • resistive.

The principle of the touch screen

You should start with the most used, i.e. capacitive display. How does such a screen work on the phone? It's pretty simple. The resistive layer serves as a charge collector, which is passed by the electrodes, while the user pushes a part of the energy at a certain point by touching. This works due to the fact that there is also current in the human body. When the charge level decreases, this change is fixed by the microcircuits and transferred to the touchscreen driver.

The main advantage of such displays is that they are quite durable. For a long time they do not lose their original brightness and are capable of transmitting clearer images.

The principle of operation of the resistive screen was described above. If you understand this in more detail, it should be said that the flexible membrane is an elastic metal plate that passes current. Between it and the conductor layer is empty space. Interacting with the display, the user makes a slight pressure on its surface, closing the membrane with the conductor at this point. Then everything happens in the same way: the system reads the coordinates, and the driver gives the OS commands.

Resistive displays are no longer running, since their functionality is somewhat limited in comparison with capacitive touchscreens. Such screens can be found only in heavily outdated equipment or various terminals, but less often.

What is the touchscreen wave? It is also a glass surface with a grid of coordinates and transducers. One of them transmits pulses, while the other receives signals reflected by a reflector. Thus, the charge "walks" through the transducers, creating an acoustic wave that the user interrupts by pressing. This determines the place of touch.

This type of display is the best option for artists and graphic designers, because it does not distort the image due to the lack of metallic coating. It is also the most expensive, while many attribute it to the technologies of the future, considering that even the capacitive display will go into oblivion, giving way to wave technology.

Video Review: Touchscreen Views

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