Feeds

MS, Mitsubishi tout translucent touchscreen concept

Apple got there first?

Top three mobile application threats

From the Archive And it sounded such a smart idea too. Microsoft and Mitsubishi are developing a 'translucent' touchscreen. The idea: touching the back of the panel controls user interface elements displayed on the front. Cute, but the question to be asked is: where do all the electronics go?

Microsoft/Mitsubishi 'translucent' touchscreen
Apple's 'translucent' iPod panel patent (left) and Microsoft/Mitsubishi's 'translucent' touchscreen concept

The two companies call the system LucidTouch, MIT Technology Review reports. As the picture shows, the notion behind LucidTouch is the ability to hold the panel in two hands and still control it. Today's touchpanels, by contrast, require users to hold them with one hand, and point and click with the other.

The translucency in the concept is real, but in the prototype screen the two companies have built it's virtual: a webcam on the back feeds the main display, its image being mirrored to look right when it's shown on the front of the panel.

LucidTouch also operates like a standard touch panel, so users can still interact with the screen in the usual way.

The snag here is clear - literally. Today's handheld touchpanels sit on top of a whole mess of electronics - processors, hard drives, memory, system logic and so on - all of which are going to have to be crammed into the display's bezel if Microsoft and Mitsubishi are ever to get the concept off the ground. The prototype sweeps such complications under the virtual rug of a desktop PC.

Apple 'translucent' iPod panel patent
Apple's 'translucent' iPod panel patent

Microsoft and Mitsubishi aren't alone in conceptualising such a system. Earlier this year, it emerged that Apple has filed a patent application the details a similar approach to allow, say, an iPod owner to control the device one-handed, manipulating virtual controls displayed on the front of the player either by touching them directly or by tapping the back of the device with an index finger.

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
US mobile firms cave on kill switch, agree to install anti-theft code
Slow and kludgy rollout will protect corporate profits
Leaked pics show EMBIGGENED iPhone 6 screen
Fat-fingered fanbois rejoice over Chinternet snaps
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Feast your PUNY eyes on highest resolution phone display EVER
Too much pixel dust for your strained eyeballs to handle
Rounded corners? Pah! Amazon's '3D phone has eye-tracking tech'
Now THAT'S what we call a proper new feature
Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
Hang on. Which bit of Developer Preview don't you understand?
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.