By Harry McCracken | Monday, December 14, 2009 at 11:54 am
Synaptics, which makes a significant percentage of the world’s touchscreens and even more of its laptop touchpads, has announced Fuse, a platform and concept phone that aims to help figure out what next-generation smartphones might look and feel like.
It’s a joint venture with chipmaker Texas Instruments, interface designers TheAlloy and TAT, and haptic-feedback technology provider Immersion. And it combines multiple interesting touches, both familiar (multi-touch) and new (my favorite: You can swipe your finger around on the back of the phone to control the interface).
PCMag.com’s Sascha Segan did a nice video explainer on the phone’s features, which I’ll borrow right here (here’s his story).
I haven’t laid eyes or hands on the Fuse yet, and every smartphone on the market today–good or bad–proves that pleasing experiences are about 90 percent integration and execution and only ten percent cool technology. But I’m looking forward to seeing it in person, and seeing the ideas it contains turn into features in shipping phones. Synaptics says it’ll demo its concept version at next month’s Consumer Electronics Show; look for phones based on it to show up starting in mid-2010.