Atmel claims revolutionary flexible touch technology

April 04, 2012 // By Nick Flaherty
Atmel is claiming to have developed a revolutionary new film-based capacitative touch sensor technology.

Based on a proprietary roll-to-roll metal mesh technology, the XSense touch sensors provide a high-performance alternative to existing touch sensors. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) from consumer tablets to industrial equipment can use the sensors to develop more robust, reliable and edge-less interfaces. The flexible film approach allows different form-factors to be used.
"The combined touchscreen sensor and controller IC industry is over $10 billion dollars currently and is still growing rapidly. There is significant demand in the industry for larger, thinner and lighter touch sensors," said Dr. Jennifer Colegrove, vice president of emerging display technologies, NPD DisplaySearch. "ITO-alternative material, such as Atmel's new touch sensor technology XSense, is penetrating into the touch sensor market to offer designers new thin, lightweight, flexible and durable designs."
The sensors enable thinner sensor stacks with higher performance and optical clarity. A narrow bond area provides higher reliability while the sheet has a low resistance for better noise immunity.
"Our groundbreaking XSense technology transforms the touch experience for users of new smartphones, tablets and other touch-enabled products," said Steve Laub, president and CEO of Atmel. "XSense launches a new era of touch design, enabling our customers to redefine touch and to create a new class of products that were previously only imaginable."
XSense touch sensors are sampling now to lead customers with production quantities scheduled to be available in the third quarter of 2012.