Fujitsu this week unveiled an ultra-thin, lightweight, flexible and rigid plastic film touch panel for mobile applications. The custom touch panels use a plastic film substrate to reduce weight, improve durability and provide a wider operating temperature range than traditional film-glass touch panels.
The new touch panels are targeted at mobile devices, such as cameras, cell phones, personal digital assistants, industrial equipment, and medical electronics. They have the potential to improve the form and function of products that previously did not use an LCD, or those with LCDs but no touch interface. Because the touch panels are shatterproof, product safety is also improved.
Fujitsu is offering both Film-Film (FF) and Film-Film-Plastic (FFP) touch panels. These panels are constructed of two conductive indium-tin oxide (ITO) layers separated by micro-dot spacers, with a flexible plastic film used for both the top and bottom ITO layers. The plastic backer for the FFP type provides a durable alternative to the glass substrate used in typical touch panels. Both types of touch panels provide reliable operation in temperatures up to 60 degrees C under normal conditions and 40 degrees C at 95 percent relative humidity.
The Film-Film touch panel can be adhered directly to the front surface of specially-built LCD designed to withstand direct pressure. Fujitsu’s Film-Film touch panels are typically 0.65mm thick, rated at 100 thousand words, and are available in sizes from 1.9 in up to 5.7 inches (diagonal). When treated with Fujitsu’s proprietary coatings, the panel provides a typical 87 percent transmissivity.
The Film-Film-Plastic touch panels feature a rigid, plastic back-panel support sheet adhered to the bottom PET film. This type of panel can be used with typical LCDs. Fujitsu’s Film-Film-Plastic touch panels are typically 2.0mm thick, rated at 100,000 words, and come in sizes up to 5.7 inches, diagonal. With Fujitsu’s proprietary coatings applied, the Film-Film-Plastic touch panel provides 85 percent typical transmissivity.
Both types of touch panels are available with Clear or Anti-Glare (AG) finish, and the AG finish is also available with an Anti-Smudge feature.
General delivery begins in early 2005. Pricing for a 2.5-inch Film-Film touch panel is about $5.00 in 100K-piece lots. A 3.8-inch Film-Film-Plastic touch panel is about $11.00 in 10K-piece lots.