A completely flat and smooth touchscreen in which buttons bubble up when the keyboard appears, sounds almost like witchcraft (or wizardry), but Tactus Technology has actually produced such a screen using a new technology. The company amazed people when it unveiled this technology last year at the Consumer Electronics Show and now, it is ready to bring it to the market.
The magical screen on which the buttons appear out of nowhere and then disappear just as before is something we could all use. The morphing hardware can be used to make typing easier and more natural. The tactile buttons are not limited to keyboards alone and can be used for gaming controls to provide an enhanced gaming experience. The simplest explanation of how it works is given below by Business Insider:
“Tactus has created a thin layer that can replace the Gorilla Glass on top of the touch sensor and display layers of a smartphone or tablet. The surface of that layer is a semi-elastic polymer under which there are little channels filled with a special transparent micro-fluid. To make buttons appear (for a keyboard, a game controller, whatever), you can increase the fluid pressure in a certain area. The added fluid physically stretches and raises the polymer surface.”
The CTO of Tactus, Micah Yairi, said that the company would release a tablet or smartphone screen cover this year. Moreover, the company is also looking for partnerships with mobile companies so that they could pre-install the screens on new devices without the users having to buy the aftermarket product. The 2013 CES video that demonstrates this magic happen can be seen below