The Future of the Touch Screen Is Touchless
The Future of the Touch Screen Is Touchless

The world is in much need of contactless technology, and even more so as we continue to live through this pandemic. Many industries have had to adapt and change how it operates. Companies are rushing to develop this innovation, which just means the world will be the ones who benefit from this race to innovate. Touchscreen technology has enhanced many of our devices and made transactions more convenient. But the pandemic has made the world afraid of the touchscreen. The obvious natural progression and fix to this issue is a touchless touchscreen.

A new patented technology developed by engineers at the University of Cambridge accomplishes just that. They call this technology “predictive touch”. Using a combination of sensor technology and artificial intelligence, it predicts the user’s projected target and selects it before the user touches it. In a public setting, this technology can save us from touching displays and contracting and spreading pathogens. We may not realize it, but we touch many different touchscreens in our everyday transactions. ATMs, self-service checkout at the grocery store, parking meters, and ticketing stations. Even after the pandemic, these touchscreens can save us from contracting a simple cold or flu.

The idea of overhauling entire systems to install new touchless touch screens seems like quite the undertaking. But a group of former Samsung engineers have created a device that could potentially turn almost any screen into a touchless touchscreen. They use what is called LIDAR technology.

LIDAR stands for Light Detection and Ranging. LIDAR sends out laser lights to illuminate a target and measures the returned reflection with a sensor. All of this information can then be used to make a digital 3D representation of the area. Scientists and researchers use this technology to map out the ocean floor or to map out the terrain of the rural jungle or forest. It can show the topography of the land without physically removing the ocean water or a forest’s trees. LIDAR is also the technology being used in the touchless touchscreen.

This touchless technology can be used in many different ways. The user can control a smart television without a remote by just tapping the air that corresponds with that location on the screen. This can be useful for multitasking as well. If your hands are dirty and you don’t want to touch your laptop, tablet, or smartphone you can simply air touch the screen without getting your device dirty. Glamos can sense a user’s motion within a three-foot radius and a rotating mirror allows for a wider degree of coverage.

New technological advancements like the Glamos can change our everyday lives. Businesses can implement tiny LIDAR sensor devices into their operations without overhauling an entire system. Touchscreen technology has grown since it was first conceived, and it is coming at a time where it’s needed the most. Air button technology, touchless touchscreens, or predictive touch—whatever you want to call it, is an advancement in technology much needed in the world right now.

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