Powerful partnerships

The Power of Integration Partners

THE CUSTOMER

A world leader in manufacturing and supplying touch solutions to the gaming market approached visualplanet to develop a bespoke version of its touchfoilTM touch sensor

THE GOAL

To enable the creation of a brand-new range of curved gaming machines, a unique product was required

THE CHALLENGE

To design a high-performance touch sensor that could be securely attached to curved glass with no loss of performance or clarity. Approval, testing and rapid manufacturing were all required within a short lead time.

WHY VISUALPLANET

We were chosen for our level of expertise gained over a decade of touchfoilTM design and manufacturing.

MEETING THE CUSTOMER REQUIREMENTS

The ability to scale manufacturing, especially for large quantities of specialised product, enables visualplanet to meet demanding volume and quality requirements within short lead times. In building this solution the benefits of visualplanet’s consolidated UK design and manufacturing team allowed for a flexible approach and rapid prototyping, vital as time to market was a crucial requirement.

In designing a bespoke touch sensor that could easily be applied to curved glass, we also delivered highly accurate touch resolution, fast performance and seamlessly integrated the new design with existing hardware.

Through extensive environmental testing in partnership with the customer, the touchfoilTM solution met or exceeded all the requirements set out in the original brief.

To meet the capacity requirement, we invested in both additional machinery and scaled our workforce, quality standards were maintained while the rapid deployment and application needs were satisfied.

 

THE OUTCOME

A new range of curved machines fitted with the custom touchfoilTM solution were launched during 2013.  They have gone on to win critical acclaim and awards and through increased game usage they have become the current benchmark for the gaming industry.

Gaming machine

 

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Smart Mirror

NSG Group and visualplanet™ to exhibit integrated smart mirror at ISE 2017

NSG Group and visualplanet™ announced on 31st of January that the two companies will exhibit an integrated solution for the fast growing smart mirror market at ISE 2017.
MirroView Small
Visitors to ISE will have the opportunity to test NSG Group’s generation 2 Pilkington MirroView™, a non-metallic mirror suitable for projected capacitive touch-screen applications, on an interactive mirror at the booth. This interactive mirror uses the recently launched multi-user visualplanet™ touchfoil™, a class-leading touch resolution and a state-of-the-art controller. Combined, the two features offer pinpoint touch accuracy and unrivalled versatility in fulfilling the bespoke needs of OEM integrators, worldwide. Generation 2 Pilkington MirroView also exhibits a neutral reflected colour, ideal for mirror applications.
Visualplanet™ is a globally recognised leader of large-format touch sensor technology with design, research, development and manufacturing based in the UK. The company’s touchfoil™ products have been widely in use by the world’s largest manufacturers, systems integrators and specialists since 2003. The visualplanet™ touchfoil™ is a clear large format, projected capacitance, flexible film touch sensor is applied to glass to add interactive capabilities.NSG Group is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of glass and glazing products for the Architectural, Automotive and Technical Glass sectors.

 

The multi-user touchfoil™ delivers lightning fast 6 ms touch performance through glass of up to 10 mm, with the precision to drive mouse-designed operating systems with a finger. It offers real-time movement and programmable palm rejection through up to 40 independent touch points, across a range of sizes from 15-55 inches. Its durability, speed, transparency, clarity, accuracy and overall performance are the most advanced in the 14 years history of visualplanet™.

The combination of the generation 2 Pilkington MirroView and touchfoil™ offers versatility for an extensive range of public-facing terminals, including smart mirrors in retail and bathroom applications, self-service ticketing, vending, gaming, way finding, multiuser tables and kiosks.
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New 32 touch Multi-User touchfoil

Visualplanet™ unveils multi-user touchfoil™ with ground-breaking capabilities

Multi User touchfoil

Pioneering innovations lead to class-leading resolution, greater touch control  and screen manipulation, with unrivalled manufacturing versatility for OEM integrators

Visualplanet™ has unveiled its latest invention – the multi-user touchfoil™, with class-leading screen resolution and a state-of-the-art controller. Combined, the two features offer pinpoint touch accuracy and unrivalled versatility in fulfilling the bespoke needs of OEM integrators, worldwide. All at an optimal price: performance ratio and underpinned by visualplanet’s renowned customer service and support team.

The multi-user touchfoil delivers lightning fast 6ms touch performance through glass of up to 10mm, with the precision to drive mouse-designed operating systems with a finger. It offers real-time movement and programmable palm rejection through up to 40 independent touch points, across a range of sizes from 15-55 inches. Its versatility renders it suitable for an extensive range of public-facing terminals, including self-service ticketing, vending, gaming, wayfinding, multiuser tables and kiosks. Its durability, speed, transparency, clarity, accuracy and overall performance are the most advanced in visualplanet’s 14 year history.

Visualplanet – who founded the market for large format flexible film Pro-Cap touch sensors – believes the product to be an industry game-changer.

‘We are a customer-focused business that builds and ships large orders of tailor-made touchfoils. We held back on launching the multi-user touchfoil until we could create one flexible enough to satisfy OEM integrators’ vast scope of needs,’ comments Dan Spencer, visualplanet’s product manager. ‘With this launch, we are offering a touch sensor that can be tailor-made to an anticipated 99% of briefs.’

‘The key is in the marriage of our technology and the controller choice. We carried out extensive testing to ensure compatibility and have selected a circuit board that, in effect, turbo-boosts our technology. This approach has enabled us to leapfrog the capabilities of existing products on the market, by launching with a controller that is easily updated, allowing us, and our customers, to stay ahead of the game. The end result is a superior user-experience that will enable developers and programmers to create jaw-dropping applications and content. The reality is that, with this launch, large format touchscreens can now be as responsive as using a smart phone or tablet device.’

Multi User touchfoil Specification

ABOUT VISUALPLANET

Visualplanet is a globally recognised leader of large-format touch sensor technology. They have manufactured touchfoil™ products for the world’s largest manufacturers, systems integrators and specialists since 2003. As founders of the industry – and with design, research, development and manufacturing based in the UK – visualplanet is committed to continual product development. To this day, they work closely with the technology’s inventor to offer unrivalled innovation and support, continually pushing boundaries to bring their customers’ ideas to life.

www.visualplanet.biz

VISUALPLANET TOUCHFOIL

The visualplanet touchfoil is a clear large format, projected capacitance, flexible film touch sensor that is applied to glass to add interactive capabilities.

 

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Britain leads global innovation, but we shouldn’t forget the basics

blog

The computer, the television, the World Wide Web – Britain has serious pedigree when it comes to innovation, technology and new inventions, and to this day we are at the forefront of advanced manufacturing. We are today home to world-leading companies in areas like interactive technology, aerospace engineering and digital devices. Although the success we have had in these areas is in a large part down to famous British inventiveness – Caractacus Potts springs to mind – it takes more than just blind invention to succeed in an increasingly competitive industry. Aspiring high-tech manufacturers in the UK need to bear in mind the following to remain at the front of the pack.

Innovate where innovation is needed…

Read the full blog post written by our Director, Mike Cole for Dell’s Tech Page One here..

www.techpageone.co.uk/industries-uk-en/britain-leads-global-innovation-shouldnt-forget-basics/

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Software & Firmware Updates

Latest software and firmware updates for Single User touchfoil SU2


touchfoil Configuration Software v2.1.0 was made available to download on the 8th December 2015 for Windows and desktop Linux Operating Systems.

Firmware v15112017 is shipping with all new orders from 23rd November.

DOWNLOAD CONFIGURATION SOFTWARE v2.1.0

This latest release of both Configuration Software and Controller Board firmware brings:

  • Improvements in USB compatibility
  • Mac OSX touch function
  • Sensor channel diagnostics to ensure optimum product performance

Customers are recommended to upgrade non-deployed products, to enjoy the benefits identified below.

Learning_MUSEUM_MASTER

Single User touchfoil Configuration Software

Release Version: v2.1.0

Available From: http://www.visualplanet.biz/support/#configuration-software

Change Log:

  • Improvements and fixes for product compatibility with Windows 8.1, Windows 10
  • Sensor channel diagnostics features to aid in product quality assurance and technical support
  • Automatic firmware update feature
  • Minor bug fixes
  • Minor UI improvements

Please note: this version of the software is compatible with firmware versions greater than v15091417.

Single User touchfoil Firmware

Release Version: v15112017

Available From: http://support.visualplanet.biz/content/1/86/en/firmware-update-for-single-user-su2_80-controller-board.html (Also ships loaded onto Controller Board)

Change Log:

  • Sensor channel diagnostics features to aid in product quality assurance and technical support
  • Improvements in product USB compatibility with USB3 (SuperSpeed) hosts
  • Improvements in product USB compatibility with Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Mac OSX

Please note: This version of the firmware is compatible with configuration software versions greater than v2.0.0.

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A case study in logistics

Logistics partnership with FedEx


Back in 2002, one man envisioned an interactive high street where large format tablet-like touchscreens would allow customers to browse shops and interact with brands, at any time, day or night. The result was the visualplanet touchfoil. The touchfoil is an optically clear, thin film that is applied to the back of a sheet of glass, which is then placed in front of digital content, such as an LCD screen. The touchfoil enables the user to navigate the content displayed on the screen by simply touching the glass.

“One evening, I was standing on the high-street,” remembers Vernon Spencer, founder of visualplanet. “A shop I wanted to go into was closed and I remember thinking how useful it would be to find out information about their products there and then. That’s when it hit me: businesses shouldn’t be putting up barriers, they should be making it easier for customers to find out about their products and services regardless of the time. Large format interactive touchscreens – that work through retail windows – could make this possible.”

The power of touch

The visualplanet patented touchfoil uses a unique wire based touch sensing method. The touchfoil is constructed of two clear, micron-thin laminated plastic sheets with an embedded mega-thin grid of sensing wires that lead to an electronic controller. When the glass is touched the location is identified through the glass on the touchfoil’s wire grid and communicated via the controller to the computer to carry out the action on the screen – just like using a mouse.

A global network of original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), integrators and distributors have integrated the touchfoil in a wide range of applications to add interactivity across key industries such as retail, transport and leisure.

“A great example of the benefits of our touchfoil technology is the creation of through-window interactive displays within retail environments,” adds Spencer. “This allows consumers to browse through a product range free-of-charge, to make a purchase, and choose a time to have the items delivered – all from the shop window. For the shop this is an excellent way to capture the user’s data and increase sales, maximising the potential of the bricks and mortar store.”

Taking on the world

visualplanet developed the product and business specifically to meet the demands of a global marketplace, and now over 98% of the touchfoils produced in Cambridge, UK, are sold overseas. In 2015 the company was even named “Best Exporter” in the GREAT Faces of British Business competition.

“Having grown so quickly and with customers in so many locations, we needed a logistics provider who could keep up with us and that we could trust,” says Mike Cole, Director, visualplanet. “That’s why we approached FedEx back in 2006.”

FedEx offers visualplanet a bespoke service that enables it to ship multiple touchfoils, regardless of the size, across the globe. “FedEx also helps us meet our clients’ needs by redirecting shipments en route if orders are urgent and needed on site immediately. FedEx always handles our largest touchfoils with care – the biggest so far being in excess of 13ft – and the Electronic Shipping Tools provided by FedEx streamline our service with automated labeling,” states Cole. “FedEx has always accommodated our short notice requirements, which has in turn strengthened our relationships with our customers.”

Back to the future

Now that interactivity is increasingly becoming a prominent aspect of everyday life, visualplanet has its sights set on continuing to drive the adoption of large format touch through developing key global partnerships in growing vertical markets.

“We regularly ship to over 85 countries worldwide, however our growth strategy will take us into new markets and opportunities,” says Cole. “Growth will be supported by our next generation touch sensor – the Single User touchfoil – which has been specifically engineered to address the requirements for interaction with self-service applications in robust solutions located in unattended public facing environments.” Cole continues.

The new Single User touchfoil aims to bridge the gap between the existing speed and accuracy of large format touchscreens and the high performance levels that customers have come to expect from small-format touch sensors, such as phones and tablets, by providing an accurate, high performance, zero-maintenance touch experience.

Cole comments: “As our business grows – and becomes increasingly globalised – we need to work with a logistics provider that understands the challenges and opportunities that come with this expansion.  We are looking forward to working with FedEx to deliver our growth plans and to create a world of touch.”

Find out more about FedEx

fedex film

Posted in News

Exported by Britain

visualplanet nominated by local MP


 

Following a visit from our local MP Heidi Allan, visualplanet has been nominated to represent South Cambridgeshire for new campaign ‘Exported by Britain’.

‘Exported by Britain’ is a new initiative set up by The All-Party Parliamentary manufacturing Group (APMG) and the All-Party Parliamentary Design and Innovation Group (APDIG) to challenge the myth that the UK no longer exports to the rest of the world. The initiative aims to raise awareness through the promotion of examples of successful British companies exporting, bring exporting to the top of the cross-party political agenda and support businesses to develop their exporting capacity through sign posting to assistance from (for example) UKTI, Institute for Export, British Chambers of Commerce.

MPs across Britain were asked to nominate a product exported from their constituency with a particular focus on manufacturing and the creative industries and we are proud to have been selected to represent our local area as we continue to support British exporting and manufacturing.

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Interactive game for brand awareness

Juicy Fruits Zapp! in Avenue Mall, Croatia

This July, the touchfoil has been used to add interactivity to a fun promotional campaign for the non-alcoholic fruit drinks brand Juicy Fruits in Croatia.

juicyfruits

This addictive game has been used to entice people to interact with the screen to get them to try the new flavors of the drinks in the Juicy Fruits range. The campaign was also run to increase brand awareness, whilst promoting the company as a fun, fresh and active brand.

The campaign, with the slogan “The fruit is power!” was designed specifically to target dynamic, active young people who are always looking for new challenges.

Based on the classic ‘tap’ games users are experienced with on the smart phone small format, the game saw bright and colourful fruit such as oranges, apples, lemons and peaches tumbling across the screen in all directions, to earn points users had to ‘Zapp!’ as many as possible within the time frame. By taking this simple, addictive game and expanding onto a large format touchscreen created a buzz around the brand and brought more people to try the drinks.

The screen also contained cameras which could record the user experience. The footage captured on the cameras could then be viewed across the Juicy Fruit’s social media platforms such as YouTube, Instagram and Facebook. This was a strategic move to connect with the players online afterwards to continue the brand relationship and open up opportunities to capture new users data for future campaigns.

Choosing a hot Saturday afternoon to promote a refreshing drink with guaranteed footfall through the shopping centre was a smart move from the brand and helped to capture a larger and wider audience during the promotion.

The set up was a 65” diagonal screen, full HD resolution 1080×1920 pixels, with integrated touchfoil to add touch capabilities. The touchfoil was selected for this application as it sits flush behind the glass and therefore does not interfere with the design aesthetics of the final enclosure and the fast and responsive touch experience of the sensor which is required for a quality user experience when playing the game.

You can see a video of the screen in action here:

visualplanet reseller Opsis: www.opsis.hr
Installation integrator Go 2 Digital: www.go2digital.hr/

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Linux Compatibility

linux

The Single User (dual touch) touchfoil is now compatible with Linux.

Beta testing began this month with full launch coming soon.

For more information get in touch with our sales team

Sing up to our newsletters for the announcement of full launch

 

Keep up to date with the latest compatibility and in house testing on the knowledge base here

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Gateway to education

A new era in digital interactive technology


Seamless, interactive surfaces arrive in the Ford Alumni Centre, University of Oregon.

The visualplanet™ touchfoil™ has been used by Second Story in partnership with visualplanet US distributor Brookview Technologies to create media cascades that are touch sensitive floor-to-ceiling displays presenting movies, images, slide shows text, infographics and maps at the University of Oregon in the Ford Alumni Center.

case-study-oregon-university-main

These visually stunning, towering interactive media panels present information about a multitude of topics to explore in a ‘waterfall of content’ style. Positioned at the very front of the university they are the first thing that visitors and prospective students see as they enter the university –thus placing a huge importance on creating an immersive and visually inspiring entrance to showcase the university.

Second Story states “When the visionary leadership of the University of Oregon’s Alumni Association conceived of their new Center, a new paradigm was born. While most university alumni centres are heritage repositories celebrating the past, the Ford Alumni Center equally cultivates the future. As the new front door to the university, this dynamic building welcomes all visitors and immerses them in the pioneering spirit that defines the University of Oregon, providing equal parts inspiration and information.”1

Gateway to education 3 Gateway to education 1

THE DESIGN

The brief was to fill the 2,000 square foot space with media installations to inspire and captivate – displaying the history whilst simultaneously showing the innovative capabilities of the universities wrapped up in an inspiring modern learning environment.

The cascades were mixed with static artefacts and posters, mixing traditional exhibits with the contemporary, to symbolise the learning environment–drawing on an understanding, learnings and appreciation of the past to bring around change, new ideas and ways of thinking.

Second story continue “The cascades reveal the past, present and future possibilities of the University experience. The stories and objects they feature preserve the legacy of the alumni who defined the University while the dynamic database that fuels them serves media and information to recruit new generations of Oregon alumni.”

The media Cascades are touch-sensitive floor-to-ceiling displays that present movies, images, slide shows, text, infographics and maps reflecting the university as a whole and each Cascade is devoted to a different subject matter. The media was designed to flow through the Cascades like a waterfall of content showcasing the universities diversity in education, arts, athleticism and social.

Visitors can simply stand and watch to see all the university has to offer, while more active visitors could swipe across the Cascade to navigate through stories, touch to dig deeper into specific areas, personalising the user experience.

KEEPING IT RELEVANT

The engagement doesn’t end at the cascades. Through a powerful, custom content management system, stakeholders across the university can log onto an intranet and modify their respective content areas. They can select between dozens of templates, upload and crop images, add videos, create slide shows, and add whole sections to their themes.

The interactive cascades also act as 3D dynamic wayfinders, which can easily be maintained and updated from the university database to serve the most current data about the student body, alumni, or programs.

The Cascade panels slide on a track system built into the floors and ceilings running throughout the Interpretive Center allowing the area to be rearranged in different ways to service for different functions. The information on the cascades can also be reconfigured to display relevant information for the event – reflect the right atmosphere. This stunning install visually represents the universities ethos of change and forward thinking.

INTERACTIVITY IN EDUCATION

Interactive displays and educational environments are an obvious match. In an environment focused on learning, developing ideas, keeping up to date with the latest findings and technology, digital signage is a clear solution.

Interactive way finders give visitors more independence and freedom to explore the site as well as the information on display resulting in a personalised experience.

The touchfoil is ideal for bespoke projects such as this. With custom sizes available the floor to ceiling displays were easily accommodated. The flexible foil based touch sensor fits flush to the glass, therefore not interfering with the design aesthetics of the cascades. This with zero bezel keeps them free from build-up of dust and dirt, so keeping them clean and smart is simple. Designed for public facing, unattended areas, the touchfoil has low maintenance requirements making it ideal for withstanding high volumes of traffic as experienced here in the University.

A HUGE SUCCESS

This innovative immersive interactive experience has generated fantastic recognition including numerous Digital Signage Awards. UK touch sensor manufacturer, visualplanet, is thrilled that the touchfoil played a part in this impressive installation which showcases it’s abilities to add touch capabilities.

1http://secondstory.com/project/browse/featured-work/university-of-oregon

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