Friday, October 18

zForce touch screen


      Neonode has patented and commercialized the zForce® (an abbreviation for “zero force necessary”) touch technology, which was designed to overcome many of the limitations of today’s touchscreens. The premise of the Company’s approach entails the projection of an infrared grid across an electronic display. As users tap, swipe, or write on the screen, zForce® detects the location of the touch based on the interruption in infrared light projecting across the screen, which translates to coordinates on the grid. The zForce® architecture and input method is believed to be unique to Neonode.  


               An infrared touchscreen uses an array of X-Y infrared LED and photo detector pairs around the edges of the screen to detect a disruption in the pattern of LED beams. These LED beams cross each other in vertical and horizontal patterns. This helps the sensors pick up the exact location of the touch. A major benefit of such a system is that it can detect essentially any input including a finger, gloved finger, stylus or pen. It is generally used in outdoor applications and point of sale systems which cannot rely on a conductor (such as a bare finger) to activate the touchscreen. Unlike capacitive touchscreens, infrared touchscreens do not require any patterning on the glass which increases durability and optical clarity of the overall system. Infrared touchscreens are sensitive to dirt/dust that can interfere with the IR beams, and suffer from parallax in curved surfaces and accidental press when the user hovers his/her finger over the screen while searching for the item to be selected.


         The automotive and navigation sectors represent expanding markets for Neonode, particularly given the need for automotive displays to function well in all types of ambient lighting. The Company believes that it is possible to rapidly obtain market share in the automotive sector, as it accomplished in the eReader sector. Neonode presently has an agreement with a Korean company, Design, which is an LG company that makes electronic components and systems for the automobile industry.  

     There  are  many  possible  applications  for  an  efficient  touch  technology  among  car  and  vehicle  component manufacturers, including for entertainment and navigational displays in high-end vehicles that can be made touch sensitive.  The zForce® technology is suitable for lower-end vehicles or cars without displays in the dash as well, as a zForce® touchpad could replace the dial, buttons, or joystick that adjust volume, climate, and other controls. A touchpad  design  would  likely  eliminate  several  dashboard  buttons,  with  different  gestures  indicating  volume, stereo, and other functions. 

Lower Cost Of Manufacture

   Is a Cost-efficient Solution for Manufacturers Fewer components equal lower materials costs Simple  manufacturing  process Licensing  a complete solution from  Neonode  obviates the  need to purchase additional modules from third-party vendors Incorporates  Advanced  Features After by Device Manufacturers Combines the  benefits of  both  resistive and  capacitive touch screens Consumes less power than competitors' solutions Includes new features that overcome  limitations of resistive and capacitive screens Works in a wide temperature range and can be used with thick gloves Allows for waterproofing  the  device.

Zforce: A Nextgeneration Alternative 

       Neonode overcomes limitations of both resistive and capacitive screens with its zForce®  technology—creating  a next-generation  touch surface  that  the Company believes can be  more  economical as well as higher performing than either of the main technologies in use today.  Currently, projected-capacitance touch screens represent the mainstream technology for multi-touch interfaces. However, zForce® also enables the convenient multi-touch features of capacitive screens but at the cost structure of more affordable resistive technologies. Further, as overviewed on, in February 2012, the Company introduced a new Multi Sense component to the zForce® technology that is intended to improve upon standard multi-touch processes.

   The newer and higher-cost capacitive technology, such as that used on Apple Inc.’s (AAPL NASDAQ) iPhone, is activated by conductive material rather than applied pressure. Electrodes in the display contact with an electrical conductor, such as a finger. Capacitive devices perform multi touch but cannot be activated by standard pointers or gloves as these are nonconductive. As a result, many users find that their touchscreen can recognize taps from their fingers but not finger nails. In contrast, the zForce® screens offer full finger touch capabilities (e.g., gestures like “pinching” the screen to zoom in or out) as well as high-resolution pen support in the same solution. 


     Neonode’s optical infrared touch technology—zForce®—can be integrated into consumer and industrial electronics to enable touch controls. The Company seeks to compete with low-cost resistive touch options while outperforming today’s advanced capacitive touch solutions. To do so, Neonode strives to effectively combine the advantages of each technology into one streamlined solution.


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