The benefits of a touch screen laptop have led to most manufacturers (like HP) preferring them to those that only rely on a keyboard.
What does that mean?
Manufacturers believe that a user (such as you) would rather have a laptop with touchscreen capability because of its many advantages.
And, that’s what you are going to read about in this article.
What Is a Touch Screen Laptop?
A touch screen laptop is one with a built-in touch panel. Instead of relying only on the keyboard, you can use the touch screen as an input device.
Such laptops come in the form of a 2-in-1 (hybrid) machine that can shift to tablet mode.
Here is the deal:
Detaching or turning the keyboard to the back converts the laptop into a tablet. Thus, you can switch from one mode to another, depending on your needs.
How a Laptop Touch Screen Display Works
You could be wondering:
Why do I need to know how a laptop touch screen display works?
Whether you are a certified techie or a novice, you need that knowledge to use your computer better.
Let’s break it down by focusing on how different kinds of laptop touch screens work.
Some types of touch screens can only sense one finger at a time based on the technology used. Others can feel and distinguish two or more key presses at once.
Let’s dive deep into the different technologies behind the laptop touch screen:
1. Restive Touch Screen
Restive touchscreens are no more than transparent keyboards overlaid on a screen.
They are popular in devices like laptops, tablets, and mobile phones. A layer of conducting polyester plastic sits onto a rigid layer of working glass.
When you touch the screen, the polyester layer comes into contact with the glass, completing a circuit. A built-in chip traces the touch to its origin and provides an appropriate response.
2. Infrared Touch Screen
An infrared touch screen doesn’t use layers of conductive materials.
How does it work?
Numerous LEDs are laid out in grid form, working together with light-detector photocells on the screen’s edges.
The LEDs shine beams of infrared light, forming a web underneath.
Touching the screen interrupts at least two beams, triggering a built-in microchip to calculate the touch’s exact position.
An infrared touch screen is excellent for both the finger and stylus users.
3. Capacitive Touch Screen
Capacitive touch screens feature multiple glass layers – the outer and inner layers are good electrical conductors.
The screen behaves like a capacitor since an insulator separates its two conductive layers.
A touch to the screen alters the electric field in varied proportions, depending on where you had touched.
You can touch a capacitive screen in two or more places simultaneously.
They work with a hand touch but not a plastic stylus. That’s because a stylus is an insulator that does not affect the electric field.
4. Surface Acoustic Wave Touch Screens
Can a touch screen respond to sound?
Instead of light, this particular touch screen technology uses ultrasonic (beyond what a human can hear) sound waves to detect fingers.
It has specially designed screen edges that generate and reflect ultrasonic sound like ping-pong across the surface.
Touching the screen interrupts the sound waves, absorbing inherent energy.
A built-in microchip controller detects the precise location of the touch, presenting the appropriate response.
5. near-Field Imaging Touch Screens
Near-field imaging (NFI) has existed for a long time, and its benefits in creating responsive touch screens are only becoming apparent.
As a finger moves closer to a near-field imaging screen, it changes the onscreen electric field.
A built-in microchip interprets that as touch and triggers the intended effect.
Want to know the best part?
The robustness of NFI touch screens makes it suitable for rugged conditions in the military.
These screens can detect touch from hands with gloves, styluses, and pens.
Benefits of a Touch Screen Laptop
The benefits of a touch screen laptop remain the same regardless of the technology behind it.
Here is the real deal:
- It has a luxurious, cool effect that sets you apart from all other laptop users.
- Laptops that are touch screen-compliant provide more comfortable and quicker navigation, allowing you to perform many tasks.
- Applying image editors is easier on a touch screen laptop than relying on a keyboard and mouse.
- Using design software like CAD is easier since you get the right dimensions onscreen.
- Today, software companies like Microsoft have operating systems designed for both touch and non-touch laptops.
- Interacting with a touch screen laptop is more comfortable than using a trackpad and mouse.
- It allows you to use a stylus to write and draw on the screen with precision. If you have a 2-in-1 Windows laptop, anything you write becomes text. It saves time, especially if you have a low typing speed.
- Touch screen laptops come with higher resolution, providing vivid, bright graphics. The color accuracy is higher for more explicit pictures and movies.
- 2-in-1 laptops (which feature touch screens) are smaller and more compact than other laptop types. That makes them portable and a must-have for those who want to use them on-the-go.
- Unlike keyboards, touch screens hardly exhibit mechanical failure due to the accumulation of dust and debris.
- Touch screen laptops trigger tactile feedback in the form of a vibration every time they contact a finger. That minimizes input error since you get to know when the computer registers your command.
- Once you convert a touchscreen laptop into a tablet, you don’t need a desk to use it. For that reason, you can hold and operate the computer with your hands.
Demerits of a Touch Screen Laptop
Like everything else, touch screen laptops have disadvantages.
Here we go:
- A laptop with a touch screen display consumes more battery power compared to a non-touch computer. That’s because the touch digitizer has to remain on even when not in use.
- A touchscreen laptop utilizes glossy material that shows reflections, affecting the viewing angle.
- Given the additional touch screen mechanism, 2-in-1 laptops might be thicker and heavier than their non-touch counterparts.
- Some touch screen links and buttons (such as those on shopping sites and online forms) might be too small and bothersome.
- A touch screen laptop is more expensive (because of additional features) and could be out of your reach.
- Touchscreens involve lots of reaching out, causing back and shoulder problems. Constant touching may also leave the screen smudged and hard to maintain.
- Holding and using a touch screen for long hours can make you more tired and painful than using a mouse or touchpad.
Touch Screen Vs. Non-Touch Screen Laptops: Which Is Better?
Given the benefits of a touch screen laptop, should you buy one for use in business?
Users of touch screen laptops say they are luxurious, setting you apart from non-touch counterparts.
They are easier to navigate, apply image editors, and use CAD and other design programs. Thanks to software development for touch screen laptops, it is easier to interact with the computer.
Besides, the laptops provide a brighter screen resolution than their non-touch counterparts.
If you want a laptop to use on-the-go, buying a compact, the lightweight 2-in-1 machine is the way to go.
Once you touch the screen, you will feel a vibration, indicating your intended action’s execution.
You might be wondering:
Is it all rosy with a touch screen laptop?
Not at all.
A laptop with a touch screen consumes substantially more power, thanks to the additional features.
It relies on overly reflective material, which could interfere with the clarity of the display.
Some touch screen laptops might be thicker and heavier than those with conventional displays.
And, it can be tiresome reaching out to the laptop screen.
Finally, cleaning the touch screen can be a problem, especially if you smudge it with dirt.