in April, we wrote that several Taiwanese LCD manufacturers were
competitively preparing for the launch of Windows 7 in the netbook/notebook
market with the development of capacitive and resistive
multi-touch panels for the respective market.
In recent months, nine firms have already
certified new multi-touch panels with the Windows 7 Logo and are all targeting
release dates generally toward the end of 2009. While most of these companies
have been working exclusively on capacitive and resistive multi-touch displays,
Young Fast Optoelectronics in Taiwan has taken an exclusive route of its own.
The company recently announced that it
is preparing analog matrix resistive (AMR) multi-touch panels for use in
netbooks with availability scheduled toward the end of the year. According to
company Chairman TJ Lin, it also plans to bring a few capacitive multi-touch
panels to the market for netbooks as well. Lin also stated that the technology
share for capacitive multi-touch panels in particular would increase 40 to 50
percent in 2010.
On the other hand, touch panel
manufacturer eGalax_eMPIA Technology Inc. (EETI) in Taiwan has already received
Windows 7 Logo certification for its 11.6-inch projective capacitive
multi-touch panels and
expects to pass the Windows 7 Logo test for its
10.4-inch, 12.1-inch and 15-inch projective capacitive touch panels by the end
of the month. Like Young Fast, it will also deliver some analog matrix resistive
panels in 10.1-inch, 11.6-inch, and 17-inch flavors.
As of now, the multi-touch panel
technology types we can expect in netbooks and notebooks at the end of this
year include projective capacitive, electromagnetic, optical and analog matrix
resistive. What all of this means in terms of economics is that a variety of
multi-touch technologies will be flooding the market all at once, and it is
largely up to the consumers to decide which ones work best on a practical scale.
With the anticipated widespread adoption of touch as a new mainstream computing
input device, the possibilities are endless.