Tactus makes physical buttons appear and disappear from touchscreens

Tactus makes physical buttons appear and disappear from touchscreens
A haptic technology that permits users to interact with a touch screen via dynamic, physical buttons that rise from the display has been showcased at SID Display Week 2012 in Boston, USA. Tactus Technology says its Tactile Layer component can make real physical buttons, guidelines or shapes rise out of a surface and recede to invisibility from any touchscreen.

Tactus joined forces with Touch Revolution to showcase a prototype system on a Google Android tablet. The companies offered hands-on demonstrations within the I-Zone at Display Week 2012.

The company microfluidic technology to create physical buttons that rise from the touchscreen to give users the experience of operating a physical keyboard. When no longer needed, the buttons recede back into the touchscreen, leaving no trace of their presence.

According to the company: "The Tactile Layer panel is a completely flat, transparent, dynamic surface that adds no extra thickness to the standard touchscreen display since it replaces a layer of the already existing display stack. Tactus enables manufacturers to create devices with entirely new ergonomics and form factors, since the screen and the keyboard can now be combined.

"When triggered, the thin layer deforms and buttons or shapes of a specific height, size and firmness appear on the surface of the screen. Users can feel, press down and interact with these physical buttons just like they would use keys on a keyboard."