Touchscreens are versatile devices that can display visual content and receive touch input, but they lack the ability to provide programmable tactile feedback. This limitation has been addressed by a few approaches generally called surface haptics technology. This technology modulates the friction between a user’s fingertip and a touchscreen surface to create different tactile sensations when the finger explores the touchscreen. This functionality enables the user to see and feel digital content simultaneously, leading to improved usability and user experiences. One major approach in surface haptics relies on the electrostatic force induced between the finger and an insulating surface on the touchscreen by supplying high AC voltage. The use of AC also induces a vibrational sensation called electrovibration to the user. Electrostatic friction displays require only electrical components and provide uniform friction over the screen. This tactile feedback technology not only allows easy and lightweight integration into touchscreen devices but also provides dynamic, rich, and satisfactory user interfaces. In this chapter, we review the fundamental operation of the electrovibration technology as well as applications have been built upon.
Part of the book: Modern Applications of Electrostatics and Dielectrics