Microchip logo
Microchip logo
  • All
  • Products
  • Documents
  • Applications Notes

2D Analog Resistive Touch

The AR11xx series is a legacy product suite not recommended for new designs for analog resistive touch.
Introduction to Resistive Touch

Analog resistive technology is popular because of its:

  • Low-cost sensors
  • Acceptance of finger, glove or stylus-pen inputs
  • Overall ease of manufacturing and integration into applications

Suitable applications for analog resistive include:

  • Mobile phones, industrial automation, retail point-of-sale, gaming/entertainment and automobile navigation systems
Resistive - How Does it Work?
An analog resistive touch screen is comprised of two layers, the flex and the stable layer. These layers are coated with a thin electrically conductive coating of Indium Tin Oxide (ITO). These two layers are separated by the spacer layer. When touched, the flex layer comes in contact with the stable layer. The point of contact creates a voltage divider in the X and Y directions. This voltage is then used to find the relative position of the touch activation.
Selecting a Touch Sensor

Three basic analog resistive sensor constructions:

  • Most cost effective - 4-wire
  • Most durable - 5-wire
  • Most flexible - 8-wire
AR1000 Series Touch Controllers
  • Turnkey touch solution
  • Built-in decoding and advanced filtering
  • Controller-driven calibration
  • Low cost with few external components
  • Universal 4-, 5-, and 8-wire support
  • Fast time to market
  • Small footprint
  • Low power
  • SPI, I2C, UART support
  • Developed by touch experts

Resistive Touch Screen Controller Comparison

Microchip BenefitOther Touch Screen Controllers
Touch SolutionTurnkey touch solution - easy integration for an accelerated development cycleIncomplete, require significant engineering to decode, filter and calibrate
Touch CoordinatesDelivers accurate touch coordinates with built-in decoding and advanced filteringNot provided, require customer to become a "touch" expert
Software Driver SupportController-driven callibration - no software drivers needed!Incomplete, require that users write calibration drivers
Design CostLow - including few required componentsHigh - including required components
Sensor SupportUniversal sensor support for all 4-, 5- and 8-wire screens (wide tolerance range)Typically support 4-wire only (tolerance variation may require redesign)
Design Time to MarketFast - no learning curve, works out of the boxSlow - long learning curve, trial and error development
PCB Real EstateSmall footprint, minimal real estateLarge footprint
Touch Expertise15+ years of touch expertiseMinimal
Driver & Design Support
For support please contact the Microchip support ticket system. For further support including OS drivers please contact our partner Touch-Base. Touch-Base provides drivers for several OS, driver and design in support.
Title Date Published Size D/L
AR1000 Touch Controller Mar 17, 2010 91.3 KB
Data Sheet
Product Briefs
Title Date Published Size D/L
Tips and Tricks
Title Date Published Size D/L
AR1000 FAQs Feb 14, 2012 96.6 KB
User Guides
Title Date Published Size D/L
AR1100 WinCE ARM x86 Drivers Aug 16, 2011 1.3 MB
AR1100 CaliFirmware Download Utility Aug 10, 2011 632.1 KB
AR1100 Calibration Utility Aug 10, 2011 356 KB
AR1020 SPI I2C WinCE 6.0 Driver Aug 2, 2010 237.7 KB
AR1010 UART WinCE 6.0 Driver Aug 2, 2010 236.5 KB