Tactile feedback is a native feature of silicone rubber keypads. When you press a button on a silicone rubber keypad, it will respond with tactile feedback. There are different types of silicone rubber keypads. They are available in different sizes, configurations, circuit boards and more. Nonetheless, they all produce tactile feedback. What is tactile feedback exactly, and how do silicone rubber keypads produce it?
Tactile Feedback Explained
Tactile feedback is sensory feedback. In other words, it’s something you feel — and in many cases hear — in response to an action like pressing a button. Silicone rubber keypads require input. You’ll have to press a button on a silicone rubber keypad in order for it to register your command with the respective circuit board. Button presses such as this will result in tactile feedback. You’ll feel the silicone rubber keypad produce a physical sensation upon pressing a button.
Benefits of tactile feedback include the following:
- Fewer input errors
- Works automatically in response to input
- Positive user experience
How Silicone Rubber Keypads Produce Tactile Feedback
Unlike smartphones and other mobile devices, silicone rubber keypads don’t rely on vibrating motors to produce tactile feedback. Instead, they use silicone rubber webbing. Silicone rubber keypads receive their namesake from their webbing. Around each button is webbing that connects to a switch. This webbing is made of silicone rubber, hence the name “silicone rubber keypads.”
Silicone rubber is an elastic material. You can bend and deform silicone rubber without permanently affecting its shape or size. For silicone rubber keypads, this means the buttons will spring back up. When you press a button, it will temporarily deform.
The silicone rubber webbing around the button will deform so that the underlying contact touches the circuit board contact and completes the circuit. When you release your finger from the button, the silicone rubber webbing material will return to its original shape by springing or popping back up. It won’t remain stuck against the underlying circuit. Rather, the silicone rubber webbing material will return to its original shape by springing or popping back up.
This spring-like action created by the silicone rubber webbing material is responsible for the keypad’s tactile feedback. Silicone rubber keypads produce tactile feedback naturally thanks to their webbing. The silicone rubber webbing material will deform when you press a button, and it will pop back up when you release your finger from the button. You’ll feel the silicone rubber webbing material return to its original shape. This is tactile feedback.