by Jenny Donelan
IntelliTouch Plus technology from Elo TouchSystems, a pioneering touch technology company founded in 1971, is, according to Elo, the first surface-acoustic-wave (SAW) touch technology with multi-touch capabilities, and also the first SAW technology to receive the Windows 7 logo. IntelliTouch Plus records two simultaneous touch locations anywhere on the screen with three axes of touch. The technology is designed to offer OEMs, application developers, and other customers tools to leverage the Windows 7 touch interface.
IntelliTouch Plus will be commercially available early this year, in the form of screen components in sizes ranging from 17 through 32 in. for consumer touch monitors as well as all-in-one touch computers running Windows 7. In addition, a 22-in. open-frame touch monitor will be available later in 2010.
A new Elo TouchSystems touch driver, also compatible with Windows 7, will be available this year for current Elo monitors and will offer the addition of digitized gestures to basic single-touch functionality. No new hardware is needed. This proprietary technology will enable real-time single-finger gesture recognition on all Elo touch monitors, a capability the company says can be easily integrated into all Elo touch monitors for compatibility with the Windows 7 operating system. •
FlatFrog Laboratories AB, a developer and manufacturer of optics-based multi-touch kits and subsystems, recently announced that it has raised €12.5 million (approximately US$8 million) in new equity from international strategic and institutional investors. Proceeds from this new round of funding will be used to commercialize FlatFrog's product line of large, high-performance multi-touch in-glass displays. Tyco Electronics, Ltd., a Switzerland-based designer, manufacturer, and marketer of engineered electronic components and undersea telecommunication systems, has acquired Sensitive Object, SA, a France-based developer of touch-input technology, for approximately $62 million. Elo TouchSystems (mentioned in article earlier) is also a Tyco business.Amazon.com has reportedly bought Touchco, a small start-up company that makes flexible touch screens. According to a February 3, 2010, article in the New York Times, "Amazon Said to Buy Touch Start-up," Amazon.com will merge Touchco with the Kindle hardware division, Lab 126, in California. Touchco makes flexible, see-through, and pressure-sensitive touch screens. The company's touch-screen technology can reportedly make a distinction between the singular pressures applied by either a finger or stylus. This news was unconfirmed by Amazon at press time. •