Sentons Standardizes its Virtual Button Tech with new Universal Hardware
Sentons, which specializes in ultrasonic sensors that can replace physical buttons on a phone with virtual ones, has a new universal sensor available that it calls SDS ButtonBar. This thin, 1.9-inch part can be integrated almost anywhere in any phone design to provide virtual buttons anywhere else on the phone. The ButtonBar is designed with haptics to mimic the feel of physical buttons. Previously, Sentons worked with phone makers to customize its technology for each phone model. The new universal part, mass-produced by Foxconn, makes the Sentons' SDS (software-defined surfaces) technology more affordable; Sentons claims price parity with standard physical buttons. Virtual buttons provide an alternative when new trends make physical buttons challenging, such as thinner sides, "waterfall" displays that wrap around the side of the phone, mmWave 5G antennas, and waterproof ratings that demand fewer openings. Phone Scoop did a hands-on video with Sentons sensors at CES in January.
You may be familiar with phones you can squeeze, or that have touch-sensitive sides. Sentons makes those sensors, but they can do more than those simple actions.
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