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Hybrid Interfaces: The Best of Both Worlds

Posted by Angie Hartline on

Membrane switches are known to be rugged and reliable - the technology has been around for a few decades, it is tried and true. Touch sensors are the "now" in technology, how many times have you approached a “screen” and touched it expecting it to do something? Today, people are surrounded by touch sensors all day, every day. What if an application wants the best of both worlds, or as some might say, "have your cake and eat it too"?...combine them into one interface solution - a hybrid interface!

XyTouch (web size).pngThis solution is often used for critical applications where the machine needs to be reliable and the actions repeatable (without false touches or errors), while still providing the flexibility of a touch sensor and a good user experience. Most frequently used on medical devices and industrial equipment.

The thing people most often love about membrane switches is the crisp tactile feel (created with metal or polyester domes), which is difficult to get on a touch sensor. Critical functions are often added as hard keys for emergency action, easy access, and repeatable reliability. However, touch sensors can present unlimited menu screens, all it takes is a simple touch or swipe. The menu screens allow for flexibility in the interface design, eliminating countless buttons and decluttering the design. Combining the two technologies allows users the perfect mix.

Another thing to add to the list of perks, the touch screen is optically bonded to the membrane graphic window, meaning the two sensors (the membrane switch and touch sensor) are laminated together with a clear adhesive to the graphic layer, making the top layer one surface with no cutouts, gaps, or spaces. This type of construction is conducive to most environments, preventing discoloration from water ingress, dirt, or bubbles on the screen between the layers.

Get the best of both worlds:

✓ Modern look & feel

✓ Freedom from design compromises

✓ Reliability

✓ Intuitive design

Critical applications require high performing switches, whether that be just a membrane switch, just a touch sensor, or a hybrid interface combining the two, you need the best. Does this sound like the perfect solution for your application? Let our design engineers help you to have your cake and eat it too! or click here to learn more about Xymox Hybrid Interface solution!