Lenovo makes multi-touch, anti-glare screens

September 16, 2009 | 12:54

Tags: #lenovo-thinkpad #multi-touch #multitouch #thinkpad #touchscreen

Companies: #ibm #lenovo

Lenovo has announced a pair of new display technologies which will grace its first Windows 7 products - including a neat multi-touch system.

As reported over on BetaNews, the company - which is now the holder of the ThinkPad name after manufacturing the devices for IBM for many years - is set to launch a multi-touch display along with an iPhone-inspired application to make using the system sans mouse easier on its X200 tablets and T400s notebooks.

Dubbed SimpleTap, the multi-touch aware application provides what the company describes as a tile-based "quick-access control center." As well as pre-configured tiles for common tasks including adjusting volume or brightness, users are able to create their own tiles which can run applications or open web sites.

The multi-touch functionality of the screen should work well with the improved touchscreen support introduced by Windows 7, although how usable the SimpleTap application will really be remains to be seen. If you're hoping to be able to track all your fingers you might be disappointed, however: the X200 tablet will support a maximum of two finger multi-touch, with the more expensive T400s notebooks supporting up to four.

The second technology, which will only be available as an option on the X200 tablet, is an display which can be easily read even in direct sunlight - making using the tablet outdoors far easier. A smart anti-glare screen - previously restricted to bulky, ruggedised notebooks designed for military use - drops the reflectivity of the display down to 1.2 percent from the more traditional 4-8 percent. The reduced reflectivity means that a lower level ofback-lighting can be used when the tablet is outdoors, resulting in an easy-to-see display and improved battery life.

Sadly for anyone wanting to spend top-dollar on a tricked-out tablet PC, the multi-touch display and outdoor-readable coating are mutually exclusive: Lenovo has stated that to combine both technologies into a single device would "bring too much bulk."

The X200 tablets start at $1,729 for the multi-touch unit or $1,779 for the outdoor-readable version, with the T400s coming in at a pricier $1,999 for the multi-touch version.

Which display technology most interests you - the multi-touch screen or a laptop which is finally usable outdoors? Share your thoughts over in the forum.
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