When researching touchscreen technologies, you may come across acoustic pulse recognition. Not to be confused with surface acoustic wave (SAW), it’s a relatively new touchscreen technology that’s become increasingly popular in recent years. Like other touchscreen technologies, it allows users to control the respective device through touch-based commands. Acoustic pulse recognition, however, uses a completely different and unique method to detect these touch commands.

What Is an Acoustic Pulse Recognition Touchscreen?

Acoustic pulse recognition touchscreens are characterized by the use of the sound waves to detect touch commands. When you touch the display interface, your finger — or any object, such as a stylus, for that matter — will create sound waves in the area of your touch. The acoustic pulse recognition touchscreen will “recognize” the area where the sound waves are created and respond by registering a touch command in that area.

How Acoustic Pulse Recognition Touchscreens Works

Some people assume that acoustic pulse recognition touchscreens constantly produce sound waves, which they measure for changes to detect touch commands. However, they actually work in a completely different way. By default, there aren’t any sound waves emitted or otherwise produced by an acoustic pulse recognition touchscreen. It’s only when your finger or an object touches the display interface that sound waves are produced.

When you touch the display interface on an acoustic pulse recognition device, your finger will produce sound waves in the area of your touch command. Because of the way in which acoustic pulse recognition touchscreens are designed, no two areas of the display interface produce the same type of sound waves when touched. As a result, acoustic pulse recognition touchscreens can determine the location of a user’s touch command by cross-referencing the sound waves created by the user to those stored in the device’s sound wave profile.

Acoustic pulse recognition touchscreens are highly accurate as well as responsive. Regardless of where you touch, they can pinpoint the exact location while responding to your touch command very quickly. Furthermore, you can perform touch commands on an acoustic pulse recognition touchscreen using a bare finger, a gloved finger or a stylus.

In Conclusion

Not all touchscreen devices are powered by capacitive or resistive technology. Granted, capacitive and resistive are the market’s two most popular and commonly used touchscreen technologies, there are alternative technologies. Acoustic pulse recognition is one such alternative that uses sound waves to detect touch commands.