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Touch Terminology Explained

Touch Terminology Explained


An anti-glare screen is designed to cut down on the amount of light that reflects off the LCD display. Reflected light or glare can reduce the view ability of the display by impacting the contrast, colors and sharpness of the display. The matte finish anti-glare computer screen also has a disadvantage of scattering the light coming out of the display, resulting in a slightly less-crisp image for the viewer. A good way to choose between anti-glare finishes is to consider the environment in which you will be using your display. A light anti-glare touch screen may be well-suited for use when there is mostly ambient light that you can control. A heavier anti-glare may be suited for environments where harsh overhead lighting or changing ambient light conditions are common.


Detect is the touch system's ability to recognize the presence, but not necessarily the precise location of a touch event on the touch surface or in the touch field. The ability to detect more than one touch event may enable some technologies to perform events such as gesturing.


The term "drift" originated when touch screens were first integrated with CRT monitors. Since the CRT image could shift over time it would appear that the touch screen would lose calibration or "drift". With the industry's change to LCD displays and fixed pixel arrays, image shift is no longer a problem. Also, early generation touch screens utilized materials, components, and integration techniques which could be susceptible to drift, but today’s advanced electronics improve materials and processes have virtually eliminated the drift phenomenon a.k.a. calibration drift.

Hard Coat

Hard coat is typically a coating applied to a film or glass substrate for the purpose of improving the surface durability of the product. Film-based hard coats are measured on the "pencil hardness" scale and coatings applied to glass may be measured by the MoHS scale.


Linearization and calibration are often confused, but each is distinctly different. Linearization is the process of correcting for or improving the performance of a touch screen as a part of the manufacturing process and special equipment is used to reach this accuracy requirement. Under normal conditions linearization should be a one time event.

Palm Rejection

Palm rejection refers to a touch screen’s ability to "reject" or ignore the presence of a palm during the process of drawing or signature capture. Palm rejection capabilities allows for accurate on-screen drawing and for capturing of a more accurate signature.

Light Transmission

Light (optical) transmission is the percentage of light that passes through a touch screen from the LCD display or light source. Typical touch screens range from 70% to 92%. All other optical characteristics being equal, higher transmission is better.