Choosing between PCAP and Resistive Touch Screens

Believe it or not, the initial technology behind touch screens dates back to the 1940s, although it wasn’t until 1965 that the first one was invented. They didn’t really flourish until the 2000s. Two of the most popular touchscreens are the PCAP, or projected capacitive touch screen, and the resistive touch screen.

Features of a Great Touch Screen

Touchscreens are used for a variety of devices, from game consoles to cell phones, to electronic voting machines. Additionally, they are implemented across many industries including medical technology, entertainment, higher education, automotive, and government. Touch screens are designed with a priority for durability and ease of use.

Resistive Touch Screens

Reliable and cost-effective, resistive touch screens are popular choices for touch screens, especially in POS environments, partly due to their higher capacity for reading signatures. Resistive touch screens can be activated through pressure, either by a tool or finger. They’re made from two layers of transparent film, with a spacer inserted between them to keep the two layers separate. One side of each layer is coated with an electrically conductive material. As the top layer is touched, the touch is measured at that position. There are a variety of different resistive touch screen technologies, including 4-wire, 5-wire, and 8-wire matrices. Resistive touch screens have a high resistance to dust and water.

PCAP (Projected Capacitive) Touch Screens

This type of touchscreen has an even longer service life than resistive touch screens. PCAPs are popular choices in medical or industrial environments because they can be activated when wearing gloves, and they allow multi-touch activation. The PCAP touch screen is assembly includes electrodes etched into the glass, which emit an electrostatic field. This field is activated when the screen is touched, and the touch’s location is determined along X and Y coordinates. Many smartphone and tablet manufacturers have implemented PCAP touchscreens in their products. These screens offer less distortion and a higher level of clarity. Unlike resistive screens which may break down after a time, PCAPs maintain their capabilities.

To secure a quote on a specific product for your electronic manufacturing needs, or to learn more about our selection of planar touch screens, or our capacitive or resistive touch screens, visit our website at

2 thoughts on “Choosing between PCAP and Resistive Touch Screens

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *