Resistive & Capacitive Touchscreens Differences

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Understanding the differences between the two touchscreen technologies is vital when selecting the most suitable solution for your application.

We cover the key differences between the two touchscreen technologies below – if you’ve any questions, one of our team will be pleased to help.

Where is it used?

P-CAP:

Smartphones, tablets, laptops and pretty much any other consumer device that has a touchscreen, plus some industrial panel PCs and HMIs.

Resistive:

Industrial HMIs and panel PCs, primarily.

What can you touch it with?

P-CAP:

Fingers, gloved hand (surgical gloves or special touchscreen-compatible gloves only) or capacitive stylus.

Resistive:

Finger, gloved hand, stylus, pen – basically anything will work, as it operates on pressure.

Is it multi-touch capable?

P-CAP:

Yes, up to 10 touch points supported.

Resistive:

No, only a single touch point (no pinch and zoom etc).

How much do they cost?

P-CAP:

P-CAP is usually a little more than resistive, but the gap is closing.

Resistive:

Generally slightly cheaper than P-CAP, as it is a simpler technology.

How about reliability?

P-CAP:

As there are no moving parts on a P-CAP screen, it would usually last significantly longer than a resistive touchscreen in the same usage scenario.

Resistive:

The mechanical nature of a resistive touch overlay means that it will eventually wear out, especially if the same point is touched over and over again. However, they are still usually rated for around 1 million touches across the entire screen area.

Which Is More Rugged?

P-CAP:

Most P-CAP screens have a toughened glass overlay to protect the sensor, which makes them very robust. However, it is still possible to smash the glass overlay.

Resistive:

The resistive touch overlay is exposed and is susceptible to damage from heavy-handedness.

How does it work?

P-CAP:

When your finger touches the screen, it interferes with the electrostatic field that the screen generates. The T/S controller then calculates the X, Y coordinates of each touch.

Resistive:

It is essentially a pressure sensor. When you touch the screen, the two layers make contact and the X, Y coordinate at that point is fed back to the PC.

Benefits

P-CAP:

· Multi-touch.

· More robust.

· Familiar ‘feel’ to users.

· Brighter image.

Resistive:

· Cheaper.

· Can be touched by anything.

· Mature technology.

· No O/S compatibility issues.

Limitations

P-CAP:

· Works with finger only.

· More costly.

· Risk of glass overlay breaking.

· Moisture can reduce accuracy.

· Potential issues with legacy O/S.

Resistive:

· Single touch only.

· Not as robust.

· Less sensitive.

· Duller image.

Find Out More

To learn more about the differences between P-CAP and Resistive touch, give one of our team a call on 01527 512 400, or drop us an email at computers@steatite.co.uk

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