What You Need To Know about Resistive and Capacitive Touchscreens

These days, you’d be pretty hard-pressed to find a technological device that doesn’t feature at least some capacity of touchscreen capabilities. Despite the growing popularity of touchscreen devices and their continual integration into everyday use, most people still don’t realize that there are two different types of touchscreen formats—capacitive and resistive—and that they each have their own unique set of functions. Businesses that are looking to incorporate industrial touchscreen monitors into various aspects of their practices must understand the advantages and disadvantages of resistive vs. capacitive touchscreens and what each of them does.

Differences between Capacitive and Resistive Touchscreen Monitors

There’s a major difference between capacitive and resistive touchscreen monitors and this knowledge is paramount to deciding which type of touchscreen computer monitor would be most beneficial to your business. Before making any final decisions or purchases, you need to take the nature of your business into account first. Consider who will be using the devices you purchase the most. Is your business primarily customer-based or employee-based? In other words, are you purchasing these devices mostly for employee use to input data or are you purchasing them as a point-of-sale device for customers? This distinction is most important because it’ll ultimately help you determine which device is best suited for the type of business you’re running.

What Is a Capacitive Touchscreen?

Capacitive touchscreen monitors are rugged and highly responsive to even the slightest touch of your finger due to their conductive capabilities. Of course, most devices come with the option of changing the sensitivity levels to suit your preferences. They’re double-layered, and the inner layer is comprised of a heavy-duty insulation while the top layer is made with a durable glass for protection and a strong point of contact. Capacitive monitors only respond to human contact because the human body has conductive properties. As soon as the device detects heat, it automatically registers the exact point of contact and each command with great accuracy.

What Is a Resistive Touchscreen?

As the name suggests, resistive touchscreen monitors are slightly more resistive than their capacitive counterparts in the sense that they don’t respond as quickly to every minute touch. This type of touchscreen monitor is more suited for industrial settings because they respond more readily to pressure from various objects including fingers and stylus pens. You have to apply light pressure for the device to register your desired command. The fact that they’re less sensitive to touch means they’re less likely to inaccurately register and store information due to an accidental graze of your hand or other objects on the screen. This makes resistive touchscreens ideal for fast-paced and high-impact environments.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Capacitive Touchscreens

Capacitive touchscreens are highly responsive, which also means they’re very sensitive to even the slightest touch. This can be a blessing and a curse as it means that every touch could inadvertently activate the screen and register as a command by the device’s processor depending on where the screen was touched. In some cases, this could lead to some inaccurately recorded data. That’s why capacitive devices generally aren’t recommended for industrial use or customer relations and point of sale environments.

They are, however perfectly suitable for mobile devices, tablets, and touchscreen computers and laptops for this reason. Just think of all the times you’ve been sitting in a crowded public place and someone accidentally grazed or pushed against your device. If every time this happened your device treated it as a purposeful command, the rate of inaccuracy would be through the roof. For work, study, and personal purposes, it’s far more sensible to use a device with capacitive capabilities.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Resistive Touchscreens

Resistive touchscreen are the polar opposite in the sense that their resistive nature makes them the ideal choice for any work environment. This includes industrial settings such as warehouses and retail environments, in which customers are constantly fumbling with point-of-sale systems. In these types of settings, the last thing you want is to constantly have to make corrections because the device you’re using is too sensitive to touch.

Customers will especially get frustrated through no fault of your own if they have to keep entering and re-entering their payment information and PINs into the system because it keeps misreading their physical commands. Not only that, resistive touchscreens also prevent employees from making numerous mistakes when doing inventory or conducting other types of data entry tasks on a touchscreen device. This allows for greater accuracy and conciseness in their work.

Another benefit of resistive touchscreens is that they don’t require direct skin contact to perform tasks and commands. Customers and employees can use these devices with stylus pens and even while wearing gloves. Also, they’re not as sensitive to liquids, which means they can still be used thoroughly even when wet, which is bound to be an issue in restaurants, casinos, and even retail stores.

Deciding Which Device Is Best for Your Business

The type of touchscreen monitor you need is highly subjective to the requirements of your business. It also depends on how much money you’re willing and able to spend on these devices.

Capacitive touchscreens tend to be a little more expensive because they’re a newer technological development, but they’re a worthy investment for businesses that are office-based. In these circumstances, you need a device that’s more receptive to touch yet still durable enough to withstand even moderately rough treatment. Keep in mind that some employees might be more heavy-handed than others.

Resistive touchscreens, on the other hand, are more appropriate for businesses that involve a great deal of outdoor work or work that’s centered on customers, including children. Once you meticulously observe and understand the nature of your business and reconcile all budgetary restraints, choosing a touchscreen monitor will be much easier.

At Nauticomp Inc., we specialize in designing and manufacturing high-quality capacitive and resistive industrial touchscreen monitors that are built to withstand the toughest working conditions and temperatures. For more information on our products, please contact us at 1-705-328-2992 for Canadian service and at 1-800-267-9491 for U.S. service.