Since the advent of touchscreens, physical buttons have all but disappeared on most of our gadgets. But some still yearn for the feeling of actually pushing a button as they tap away at their gadgets.
That’s where Tactus Technology comes in with their revolutionary Tactus Morphing Tactile surface. This new tech uses microfluid technology under the touch surface to create real, physical buttons on a screen’s surface on demand that quickly disappears when not in use, reverting to a flat surface. At CES, the company demoed a 7-inch tablet that utilized this physical interface by making buttons appear on the touch keyboard. When called for, the buttons raise out of the screen almost instantly, providing a physical surface with a small amount of resistance to prevent accidental touches. Then when no longer needed, the buttons melt back into the screen, leaving the screen flat once again. To get into the nitty gritty behind the tech, check out the white paper (PDF) about it.
Typing accurately on a small touchscreen keyboard can be a bit of a challenge, but the company feels that with the help of physical buttons it can be a breeze to type accurately. It isn’t limited to QWERTY style keyboards either as it can be used in a game pad configuration as well.
Rather than creating Tactus-branded phones or tablets, it seems the company is looking to partner with OEMs to integrate the technology into next-generation devices. This new development should be a boon to all those who have difficulty typing accurately on such tiny keyboard.