How-To Geek

How Does a Touch Screen Phone Work? [Chart]

There are three types of touch screen technologies available in today’s touch screen phones: resistive, capacitive, and infra-red. Learn about the different benefits and capabilities of each and make a more informed decision about your next mobile phone selection with this helpful chart.

How Does a Touch Screen Phone Work? [via GraphJam]

Akemi Iwaya is a devoted Mozilla Firefox user who enjoys working with multiple browsers and occasionally dabbling with Linux. She also loves reading fantasy and sci-fi stories as well as playing "old school" role-playing games. You can visit her on Twitter and .

  • Published 09/26/12

Comments (7)

  1. dima


  2. Crash

    I’m curious how wacom screens fit in here.

  3. Christoffer

    Whoever made that chart forgot one thing: Touch precision. And as far as I know, resistive touch is still more precise than the other types…

    Are you thinking of an Active Digitizer?

  4. CoopsMgoops

    Unless I am much mistaken, capacitive touch screens are by far superior in accuracy and responsiveness to infrared and resistive touch screens.

  5. Jason

    The chart is missing Projected Capacitive, which is not the same and really much better than the previous capacitive technology.

  6. Phil

    Resistive touch always were more precise and were used on all Palm OS devices whether made by the original Palm hardware maker enabling handwriting text entry, or the other makers who licensed the OS. Sony was probably the most innovative of these, and led the way with full colour screens, and typed pages you could draw on and paste images onto. It’s taken till the galaxy note for smartphones using capacitive screens to catch up. Only trouble was the resistive screens were very easily scratched and needed screen protectors which muted the colours [which still were very vibrant for the time] [the processors too were hopelessly slow!]

  7. Aruldd

    The device on the top right is the greatest smartphone ( or a computer) ever.
    The Mighty Nokia N900

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