Phones set for pressure-sensitive quantum keys

A Samsung components manufacturer has licensed Quantum Tunnelling Composite (QTC) for use in phones.

science!

Smartphones and other devices could soon become pressure sensitive, as a Samsung components arm has licensed quantum-based technology from a Yorkshire firm.

Samsung Electro-mechanics has licensed the Quantum Tunnelling Composite (QTC) technology from Yorkshire-based Peratech, in order to create more sensitive devices. QTC uses spiked bits of nanoparticles in polymer to create the effect.

Peratech's switches will go into navigation keys - called Navikeys - on mobile phones, offering continuous instead of the standard on/off input in standard switches. That means the switch will know how much pressure is being used at any given time.

"This adds a whole new dimension to the input device and this proportional input opens up a raft of new ways to interact with the phone," Peratech explained. "For example, the speed of scrolling through a list or the speed of movement in a game can vary depending on how hard the switch is pressed, making interaction faster and more intuitive."

Peratech joint chief executive Philip Taysom said we can expect to see phones with such tech soon. "Samsung EM supplies components to most of the leading phone manufacturers so our technology will soon be used across a wide range of next generation phone models," he said in a statement. "In fact, a Navikey using QTC from Samsung EM is already being used into a Tier 1 mobile phone."

However, a spokesman for Peratech told IT PRO that the firm wasn't allowed to disclose which phone that was. "It's on the streets but we're not allowed to tell you," he said.

The Peratech site does have an "anonymised" image of the phone in question.

QTC phone
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