updated 10:55 pm EDT, Thu April 9, 2009
Haptic tech in Nokia phone
Nokia is expected to use VibeTonz technology from Immersion in up to three upcoming touchscreen phones, adding evidence to rumors that the devices are set for release sometime this year, according to TheStreet. People familiar with the plan claim that the thin handsets will be available as early as this fall. The lineup might include the touch-only 'Ivalo,' a successor to the N97 but without the slide-out QWERTY keyboard.
The tech company produces haptic feedback systems that provide a variety of sensations such as bongs, rumbles or vibration bursts. Deployed on a touchscreen phone, the system could offer specific feedback for different types of input or finger gestures.
Several manufacturers, such as RIM, have adopted similar feedback methods to attract customers that find QWERTY keyboards easier to use than touchscreens. The BlackBerry Storm offers a display that clicks when pressed, although many users have complained the required extra pressure causes its own difficulties.
The Ivalo is said to serve as Nokia's next flagship device, offering a 3.5-inch screen and 32GB of integrated memory. Another touchscreen device leaked in a company roadmap, the Eitri, should also offer a 3.5-inch screen, at least 8GB of memory, an electronic compass and the haptic feedback control system.