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Future tablets could let you 'feel' what’s on the screen

by Doug Drinkwater

October 10 2013

Your next iPad, Galaxy Tab or Surface could let you "feel" the ridges on a map or the texture of an apple behind a screen, if a small band of researchers succeed with their latest project.

In a new video, Disney Research explains how it is working on a new process called "rendering 3D tactile features on touch surfaces". The technique combines electro vibration and Disney's own algorithm to make for a tactile 3D screen which allows human hands to feel the textures or even the shape of an object displayed on screen.

The firm’s video on the tactile display provides a detailed breakdown of the technology, while there is also a research paper on the matter for those who want to dive even deeper.

Disney Research is no stranger to forward-thinking ways of interacting with objects. The firm is also responsible for a touch sensor that works on water and a speaker which fits in your earlobe. 

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