Multi-Touch Evolved in the Droid Incredible and EVO 4G Thanks to maxTouch


Some interesting news has popped up this morning. Ever since the introduction of Android 2.1, we’ve seen multi-touch enabled by default for any device with the hardware and the aforementioned software. The Nexus One and The Motorola Droid/Milestone are two such phones that come to mind, but they’ve been bound by a very unsightly technological limit: the touch sensors sucked for multi-touch.

When Phil from Android Central demoed the multi-touch on his review unit of the Droid Incredible, he noticed a major difference in quality and build beneath the gorgeous screen. Apparently, the Droid Incredible uses entirely new sensory technology as opposed to its high-end Nexus One and Motorola Droid brethren.

Android and Me did some digging and found out that Atmel was the culprit saving grace for HTC’s (and hopefully, all other manufacturers) newest devices. The maxTouch sensors offers enhanced multi-touch input with support for virtually unlimited sensor registers at a time. This means that your multi-touch is actually multi-touch, and not just “touch one finger. Ok the next. Now, watch as everything gets stupid”.

There’s some hardcore “Bourne” action going in on that video, and it’s probably being way too exaggerated for my tastes, but its translation to a simple phone use-case speaks much louder in volume, and we can’t wait for this to become standard in all phones pretty soon (including the HTC EVO 4G).

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Soooooo nice…want to touch the hiney…AROOOOOOOOO!

  2. My droid multitouch works just as good as the multitouch I had on my iPhone. But whatever, I’m all for improvements.

  3. And what about the Desire? Does it do the same weird stuff as N1, or is it accurate like the Incredible?

  4. AHHHHHHHHHH jealous! but i still love my nexus one. I just hope they implement all those new features into the NexusII. I probably wont buy a new phone until 2-3 years. unless google release the next one sooner =O!

  5. Does this mean that the Incredible will work with a sylus or other input device?

  6. Great article! I was worried about this ever since I heard about the Nexus 1’s issues. This put a huuuuge smile on my face (it really hasn’t left since the major leaks started coming). I’ve got to say, I’m really glad this turned out to be a hardware solution: it means that HTC / Verizon are at least aware of certain issues and take steps to correctly RESOLVE the issues, instead of simply working around them (which is what it would’ve been if it was a software fix). Thanks again!

  7. Yeah quick note.. The Motorola Droid has a decent touch controller and is not the same as N1. It doesn’t suffer from the limitations that are visible on the N1.

  8. @Gerusz
    I own the desire and sadly it FAILS.

  9. Wow….that’s Incredible!ahahhahahaha!

  10. The droid has some pretty bad faults too, just download a drawing app.

  11. that atmel video is BAD-ASS!!!

  12. I’ve the app they used to test on my Milestone, and dont suffer of the nexus one issue… is just like the incredible…

    Try yourself with:
    Multitouch Vis Test
    Multitouch Visualizer


  13. I tried to find that Multitouch app in the app store and had no luck, anyone found this app in there?

  14. lol @ crossing “axises”

  15. There’s some mis-information in the article: While the Nexus One does indeed suffer from faulty multi-touch hardware, the Moto Droid uses a display/digitized from a different manufacturer that does not exhibit such problems.

    However, most if not all previously built HTC devices including the Desire and the Hero do indeed have this problem.

  16. Ok I’m ready to get one now…I’ve had all the convincing it takes. And 1000 more iPhones just died.

  17. Nexus one touch tech is not Multitouch, it’s dual touch, which is not the same. Its a hardware limitation due to it being a synaptics touch tech. IPhone3GS hardware actually has support for true multitouch, perhaps this is also the case with Droid incredible, and evo 4G.

  18. I though you weren’t suppose to cross streams?!?! Won’t all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light?!?!

  19. @MonkeyCheese
    LOL! I love it. :)

  20. What are the odds that they could just switch sensors on the Nexus One midway thru production? Is the integration of the sensor a complicated matter or is it easily swappable? I would think it’d make a lot of sense to switch it up if they’re gonna keep selling the N1 for the next 6-8 months…

    Then again, it hasn’t sold particularly well so it may just not be worth their time. ‘Least not with the Incredible almost out and the EVO 4G almost around the corner… The only people buying the N1 soon are gonna be T-Mo customers and desperate AT&T customers who are fed up w/AT&T’s backhand treatment of Android.

    I’ll probably be one of those people soon… Despite the inferior trackball, touch sensor, and iffy touch-sensitive buttons… I’m just tired of waiting for AT&T to announce a decent Android phone.

  21. Nice! Glad to know my Evo will have this. I don’t think they meant that this particular screen would work with a stylus but it’s nice to see that some companies are developing hybrid touch/stylus displays. I’d want that more on a tablet for drafting and notes but it’s good to see Herr Jobs doesn’t speak for everyone when he says that pen or stylus is automatic fail.

  22. If you are wondering, it will also support fingernails and a stylus.

  23. Where is this app so I can download it to the phone? I have long fingernails and need the phone to detect my nails.

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