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Resistive Touch

A resistive touchscreen works on a number of layers and when the layers are pressed together, a touchpoint is registered.

A Resistive touchscreen requires a touch with a certain amount of force applied to its surface. It consists of a flexible film upper layer and a rigid lower layer. Resistive touchscreens can be operated with a finger, a fingernail, a stylus or any other pointing object. However this technology is rapidly disappearing and we address some of the challenges why in our article on RTP technology.

Advantages of resistive touch

  • Activated with any input (finger, stylus, gloved hand, pen etc)
  • Low production cost
  • High resistence to dust, water and vibration
  • Very little EMI discharge
  • Low power consumption

Disadvantages of resistive touch

  • Lower transmittance and overall optical quality
  • Generally limited to single or dual touch
  • Prone to scratching and damage
  • Requires periodic recalibration
  • Limitations on the size

Differences between PCAP and resistive touch

Types of resistive touch configuration

Touch Technology Comparison

Resistive Touch Capacitive
Projected Capacitive (PCAP) SAW Infra-red
Clarity Good Very Good Very Good Very Good Best
Works with any object Best
Any object
Finger or capacitive stylus
Finger, capacitive stylus, surgical glove
Finger, gloved hand, soft stylus
Very Good
Most objects
Sensitivity Good Very Good
Very Good Very Good Best
Accuracy Very Good Good Best Very Good Very Good
Scratch Resistant Poor Very Good Best Best Best
Sensitivity to humidity Best Best Best Very Good Very Good
Sensitivity to cleaning Very Good Very Good
Best Very Good Best
Sensitivity to contaminants Best Good Very Good Average Good
Sensitivity to EMI Best Average Average Very Good Best
Sensitivity to vibration Best Very Good Very Good Very Good Best

How resistive touch works

A resistive touch screen consists of a flexible film upper layer and a rigid lower layer which when pressed join the layers together to complete the circuit and register a touch.

Works with most input types