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Researchers are developing a soft, stretchy touch screen panel

Engadget logo Engadget 12/08/2016 Brittany Vincent
© Provided by Engadget

Gaming with mice and keyboard or controller is one thing, but what about using a soft, stretchy touch panel? Wouldn't that look and feel pretty bizarre?

Researchers have been hard at work on developing a special, highly stretchable touchpad that can be utilized to play games and write words. It's very impressive, made of hydrogel and a network of hydrophilic polymers that allow the panel to stretch beyond normal limits. This was achieved using a polyacrylamide hydrogel with lithium chloride salts that help the hydrogel retain water.

During tests, the touchpad was able to operate normally when stretched to more than 1000% its normal area, though after 100 cycles resistance was increased only slightly. This is an extremely impressive breakthrough, and the applications are obvious, especially when it comes to medical devices and even improving portable gameplay in the future.

You can see the device in action here.

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