Synaptics adds capacitive touch to your spacebar, because why not?

Synaptics logoSynaptics thinks your spacebar is "underutilized," and it wants to fix the problem by adding another touch interface to your PC. Its new "SmartBar," announced today at Computex, is a touch-capable capacitive spacebar with support for several gestures and customizable virtual buttons.

The SmartBar isn't intended as a replacement for a trackpad, but it could potentially save you some trips to the trackpad if it works well. You can program swipe gestures to select words you just typed, allowing you to quickly delete or replace them. You can use both of your thumbs together to perform a pinch-to-zoom gesture. And "up to five" virtual buttons can be programmed on the spacebar to perform macros, replacing common keyboard shortcuts. Other use cases, demonstrated in the graphic above, include using your thumbs to summon and interact with a custom app menu and scrolling vertically through documents or Web pages using only your thumbs.

Synaptics says the SmartBar is available for OEMs to use now, and it will apparently be compatible with both desktops and laptops. ThermalTake is planning a gaming keyboard with a SmartBar—the competitive gaming circuit requires the mastery of vast numbers of keyboard shortcuts, something the SmartBar could hypothetically help with if it can manage to be accurate enough.

Synaptics adds capacitive touch to your spacebar, because why not?

The SmartBar is just the latest of Synaptics' efforts to spice up the plain-old PC. Late last year it announced trackpads with integrated fingerprint sensors that can be used not just for unlocking your laptop, but for replacing the passwords you use to log into various online services. The company also announced a new product called "Natrual ID," a version of the same technology for desktop PC mice. Natural ID mice will support the upcoming Windows Hello feature and FIDO.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: keyboards, technologies

Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
Your comment:

Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party

Last news

A mobile hotspot in Australia will be capable of hitting gigabit speeds on the go
Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri will speak at MWC 2017
Preliminary data for October shows another Windows 10 boom
The Helio P15 packs an octa-core Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 2.2GHz
Microsoft’s event has been scheduled for October 26th so hopefully we’ll hear more about Redstone 2 then
Samsung claims up to 27-percent higher performance or 40-percent lower power
A smartwatch prototype developed by researchers at the Dartmouth college
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
HP Slate 7 is a 7-inch Android 4 Tablet PC with good sound
A cost-effective, 7-inch tablet PC from a renowned manufacturer
October 25, 2013 / 4

News Archive



Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments