How Touch Screen Works

Hello Guys have you ever wondered how the touch screen technology that we are using in our mobiles, laptops, etc.. work. For over 100 years the keyboard was the science of innovation, creation and communication but it was only until 2007. Yes, the iPhone wasn’t almost the first touch screen devices but it is the one that bought touch screen technology into the mainstream which is now used by millions of people every day.

Today let’s learn what technologies enable the creation of the touch screen, how the touch screen actually work and conceptually what does the future hold for touch screen technology.

Nearly fifty years before, the primary user interface with computers was the keyboards but the technology seem different on the surface the similar is between the touch screen and a keyboard.  Guys this may surprise you if you take off the keys of the keyboard you’ll see the circuit board. The keys on the keyboard contain a conducting material at the bottom. When you press a key on a keyboard, you bring a piece of conductive material as a contact with the circuit board and thus you complete the circuit by allowing current to flow and thus the key which is pressed registers.

Keyboard functionality

Keyboard functionality

A Similar flow of current happens inside a smart phone except the conductive material that we are using in the keyboard now becomes your skin on your finger. How’s that possible and how it’s conducting. You can’t see it but right now you and many things around you are carrying an electric charge, you are electrical. Our bodies are very good conductors of electricity.

touch screen technology

How Touch Screen Works

As you drag your feet across a carpet, you get some charged stored up and it can be dissipated when you touch something metal you sometimes feel painful electric shock. In the same way, when you touch your phone a much smaller amount of current passes so you don’t feel it at all. That’s why you can’t wear gloves and use a touch screen device.

Guys just try this, if you want to use your touch screen device with gloves just touch the gloves tip of your finger to your tongue and find if you can use your phone again. This works because we know; water is a pretty good conductor of electricity. So if the keyboard has a circuit board.

Let’s take a look under the glass and see what we can find out, when you take a look of your phone under a microscope you see those very tiny lines smaller than you hair. Those lines are conductive as well as they are transparent.

Tiny lines passing on the screen and are conductive

Tiny lines passing on the screen and are conductive


That’s why it’s basically invisible when you’re using your phone. Integrated with the electrodes. When you tap your screen those wires will sense exact spot you tapped. But how, our smart phones touch screen actually works on one of the fundamental principles of electricity. This is discussed in the Resistive and Capacitive types.

Types of Touch Screen Technology

There are many touch screen technologies, but the most commonly used are resistive and capacitive.

How Resistive Touch Screen Works

resistive touch screen technology

How resistive touch screen works

The resistive touch screen technology comprises of two thin layers, the conductive layer and the resistive layer. These thin layers are separated by invisible spacers or gaps. The electric current runs through the conductive layer all the time, when you touch the screen the resistive layer comes in contact with the conducting layer. Thus the electric current changes at that point of contact and function corresponding to that point are carried out. The resistive touch screens are durable and consistent but they are harder to read as they contain multiple layers and thus reflects the ambient light i.e., the surrounding light is reflected back on the screen making the text harder to read.

How Capacitive Touch Screen Works

capacitive touch screen technology

How capacitive touch screen works


Capacitive touch screen technology work with anything that holds an electric charge including human skin. They don’t use the pressure of our finger to create disturbance in electricity.Capacitive touch screens are constructed using materials like copper or Indium Tin oxide which store electric charges in an electro static grid of tiny wire which are smaller than our hair. There is a glass substrate, a conductive layer, a protective layer and a controller and electrodes at the corner. The electrodes apply low voltage to the conducting layer creating a uniform electro static field. When a finger taps the screen, a small portion of electrical charge is transferred to the finger (as it is very small we don’t feel any shock) to complete the circuit creating the voltage drop of the circuit at that point. The location of the voltage drop is recorded by the controller and corresponding operation is performed at that point and this is how the capacitive touch screen works.

As the technology is consistently improving, the Samsung has bought an “in-cell technology” into the market by inserting the capacitors inside the display itself known as “SUPER AMOLED SCREENS”.

And many more are available in the market; these are the most commonly used touch screen technologies…


Maybe the Future of touch screen technology

Maybe the Future of touch screen technology


These are the most tempting concepts i.e., transparent mobiles that we are seeing in movies, concept videos of various companies and there are possibilities that in the near future they will be in our hands.

Watch the awesome video on future of Touch Screen Technology by Jan Ledergerber and get wondered

Feel Free to share your Valuable comments…..


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