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Taptic Engine: How Apple Dominates Tactile Response Technology

In 2014, Apple launched the first Apple Watch and, with it, a new component that came to integrate almost all Ma products: I speak of Taptic engine. Apple's small but important vibration engine is responsible for the tactile response of Apple Watches, iPhones and Macs and for bringing 3D Touch and Haptic Feedback to life (present on the iPhone XR).

The Taptic Engine Origin

While the Taptic Engine is a component produced by Apple, the technology behind the vibrating engine is certainly not just used by Apple. In this sense, the iFixit explains that while other companies have invested in technology, only Apple has mastered it.

To understand the origins of using vibratory motors, we need to go back a bit in time (more precisely towards the end of the past decade). According to iFixit, as smartphones began to lose their physical keyboards, many companies implemented touch-responsive touch (such as BlackBerry with Storm virtually the first direct competitor of the iPhone, which featured a "clickable" screen).

In addition to BlackBerry, Motorola also used the touch response to simulate the feel of a button press with the Rokr E8. Most smartphones running the Android system (especially those made before 2014) are produced with a “vibrate to touch” feature that automatically activates when you touch the screen.

The Apple Differential

But what makes Taptic Engine different from other haptic technologies is the engineering Apple has put into it, especially in terms of its size, which can be deployed on both Apple Watch and MacBook trackpads. and MacBooks Pro).

Given this effort, iFixit stated that Apple has come closer than any company to actually replacing the mechanical tactile buttons on their gadgets, even though most Android devices currently use the same type of technology used by Ma on Taptic Engine. (call Linear Resonant Actuator, or LRA).

For the repair firm, both Google's mobile operating system and device manufacturers running it have not taken advantage (such as Apple) of using this technology except LG, which has done some “laudable work with its V30 and V40 phones” and Google, which uses rectangular LRAs, similar to the Taptic Engine, capable of performing more articulate vibration patterns.

Leaving the software aside, there are other things that make Taptic Engine unique and more capable than its LRA brothers within other smartphones. We can look at each other in excruciating detail, but to be honest, I don't think the details matter as much as the dominant truth: Taptic Engine is the king of the freaks because Apple cares more about this technology than any other. (manufacturer) in the industry.

The future of technology

As for the future of this technology, iFixit has stated that components like the Taptic Engine may in the future replace the “problematic Apple keyboards” in reference to the MacBook (Air / Pro) keyboard that faces problems due to the butterfly engine.

In this sense, the firm revived the idea of ​​the Mac gaining a sensitive screen that can identify the applied force and offer various types of real-time response. In addition to eliminating the problem of today's butterfly keyboards, a virtual keyboard would also help Apple solve the problem of layouts in different countries and enable the company to enter the flexible display market.

via the loop