Unbeknownst to most users, touchscreens are typically designed with an invisible layer. Known as an oleophobic coating, it’s found on the outermost layer of the display device. Touchscreens typically have a glass outer layer. On top of this layer is an oleophobic coating. Unless you’re familiar with the mechanics of touchscreens, you might be wondering what the purpose of an oleophobic coating is.

Overview of Oleophobic Coating

Oleophobic coatings are essentially invisible layers of oil- and moisture-wicking chemicals. Most touchscreens feature an oleophobic coating. You typically won’t be able to see it. Whether you have a capacitive or resistive touchscreen, though, it probably features an oleophobic coating. Manufacturers include an oleophobic coating on the top layer. The coating essentially covers the top layer where it offers protection against oils and moisture.

Prevents Fingerprint Smudges

Ever wonder why touchscreens don’t show fingerprint smudges? The reason is because they feature an oleophobic coating. Oleophobic coatings prevent fingerprint smudges. It’s estimated that the average person touches his or her smartphone over 2,000 times per day. Conventional wisdom should lead you to believe that all of these touches will leave behind fingerprint smudges. Fortunately, fingerprint smudges aren’t a concern thanks to oleophobic coating.

Fingerprint smudges are typically the result of oils transferring from your skin to a touchscreen’s display interface. Oleophobic coatings prevent fingerprint smudges by wicking away these oils. An oleophobic coating will essentially repel the oils from your skin. The end result is a clearer and cleaner display interface.

Improves Accuracy

Another reason touchscreens have an oleophobic coating is to improve their accuracy. The buildup of oils, moisture or liquids on a touchscreen’s display interface can affect its ability to identify touch commands. As these contaminants build up, the touchscreen may fail to accurately identify and respond to your touch commands.

An oleophobic coating improves accuracy by discouraging the buildup of contaminants. It will wick away contaminants like oils and moisture while subsequently making the touchscreen more accurate. Along with preventing fingerprint smudges, touchscreens have an oleophobic coating to improve their accuracy.

If you’re going to buy a touchscreen, you should check to make sure it features an oleophobic coating. Oleophobic coatings are essential to the prevention of fingerprint smudges, and they are equally important in terms of accuracy. Oleophobic coatings consist of a layer of oil-wicking chemicals. The end result is fewer fingerprint smudges and improved accuracy when performing touch commands.