Capacitive Touch

Touch Screen Layers of an iPhone

The different layers of a common touchscreen.

Touch screen technologies are an easy and increasingly popular way for humans to interact with computers.  There are several technologies that can enable touch-screen technologies on electronic devices.  Capacitive touch screens have become the norm in consumer electronics at the current time of this article in November 2013. Some of the most popular smartphones and tablets such as Apple iPhones and iPads use capacitive touch screens. These touch panels are made up of an insulator that is easily seen through such as glass or acrylic, and a transparent conductor which can detect a shift in the screen’s electrostatic field. When this field is disrupted by something with an electrical charge, such as the human finger, the controller chip can detect this change in the field and determine where the touch occurred.