Have you heard of resistive touchscreens? Like all touchscreens, they are devices that support touch commands. Resistive touchscreens simply feature multiple layers of electrically resistive material with printed electrodes. Here are six facts about resistive touchscreens and how they work.

Resistive is the second-most popular touchscreen technology. The only technology that’s more popular than resistive is capacitive. From tablets and smart appliances to human machine interfaces (HMIs) and control panels, many devices feature a resistive touchscreen.

#2) Commonly Used in Hospitals and Other Medical Facilities

Resistive touchscreens are commonly used in hospitals and other medical facilities. This is because they offer a high level of protection against moisture and contaminants. Resistive touchscreens feature a sealed top layer. Even when exposed to moisture or contaminants, they will continue to operate.

#3) Support Styluses

You can use a stylus to control a resistive touchscreen. Styluses are pen-shaped instruments that are used to control a touchscreen device. Capacitive touchscreens don’t support styluses. Capacitive touchscreens require the use of a conductive object, and because most styluses aren’t conductive, they don’t support styluses. Resistive styluses rely on pressure to detect touch commands. Whether you press the display interface with a bare finger, a gloved finger or a stylus, the resistive touchscreen should recognize your touch command.

#4) One Layer Measures the Voltage of the Other Layers

Most resistive touchscreens feature a dual-layer design. They are made of two layers that are separated by air or inert gas. A voltage is applied to one of these layers. The other layer will then measure this voltage. When you perform a touch command, you’ll press the two layers together. As a result, one of the layers will detect the voltage of the opposite layer.

#5) Supports Multi-Touch Commands

You can also perform multi-touch commands on resistive touchscreens. Multi-touch commands are those that involve multiple points of contact at the same time. Pinching the screen to zoom in or out, for example, is a type of multi-touch command. Not all touchscreens support multi-touch commands. But if you choose a resistive touchscreen, it should support multi-touch commands.

#6) Available in Different Wire Configurations

Resistive touchscreens are available in different wire configurations. The wire configuration represents the electrode layout. There are four-wire resistive touchscreens that contain electrodes on the top and bottom layers, for example, and there are five-wire resistive touchscreens that contain electrodes in other places.