CSR introduces ultra-thin touch interface for smartphones and tablets


September 4, 2013

The "world's thinnest" touch-sensitive surface from Cambridge Silicon Radio

The "world's thinnest" touch-sensitive surface from Cambridge Silicon Radio

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Scientists at Cambridge Silicon Radio (CSR) have developed a flexible computer keyboard that is paper thin and is claimed capable of transforming any area into a touch-sensitive surface. The company describes its creation as the world's thinnest wireless touch surface at 0.5 mm thick, and offers consumers a low-power Bluetooth technology featuring "the latest in printable, flexible electronics and touch screen sensing."

The ultra-thin surface is wirelessly connected to an iOS 7 or Windows 8 device using CSR’s brand new CSR1010 chip, which is optimized solely for Bluetooth Smart, a recent technology that ostensibly extends battery life and has a much smaller form factor than standard Bluetooth. With a touch latency of under 12 ms the user experience is reported to be seamless, providing instant visual feedback.

"The device can do basic text input as well as touch and gesture control, so you can swipe and pinch and zoom, as well as use much more complex gestures," says Paul Williamson, Director of Low Power Wireless at CSR. "Additionally, it can be used with a stylus-like pen for handwriting recognition or for drawing and sketching."

The touch surface is able to register multiple touch points thanks to Atmel's touch silicon technology, with reel-to-reel printing from Conductive Inkjet Technology used to apply the conductors to the flexible membrane. The process allows for the production of a wide range of shapes and sizes, which can bring a full-sized keyboard experience to protective tablet covers, for example, or add touch-sensitive areas to a desktop workspace.

CSR’s ultra-thin touch surface will be unveiled to customers for the first time this week at IFA 2013 in Berlin.

The video below outlines the key selling points of CSR's ultra thin touch surface technology.

Source: CSR


I love how they create a touch interface and then do their brainstorming on a regular white board... analog rules!


If it is a bluetooth keyboard, it should be able to be used on any Android device that has bluetooth cababilities.

I think it could make for some very thin devices.


Looks like a great device, with a ton of possibilities, but the big question will this be brought to market at a cheap price or be yet another device that it pricing its self out of the mass market?

Mark Brown

In the beginning was the QWERTY keyboard. We all know why, so I'll skip that bit. Suffice it to say that because we all learned how to type on a QWERTY, that's the input device we like. But then, when we were learning, voice recognition was in its infancy and just Not Very Good.

It's a lot better now; soon, if not already, some toy manufacturer or other will be producing a voice-driven device for preschoolers. That generation, and all who follow, will not want a kb at all. Why would they? So I really think that while all of these fancy schmancy flexible & thin etc kbs are fine and all, it's a dying industry. Time to move on, chaps and chapesses.

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