The new design works via Bluetooth and can be printed with conductive ink onto a standard piece of photo paper. The brain behind the device is captive touch technology that doesn’t need to use special machinery, it is able to use standard print processes such as screen print, flexography, and offset lithography. This would then allow low energy wireless control i.e. Bluetooth to be implemented into low cost materials such as card, plastic and in this case paper for a super low cost. The team at Novalia are hoping to role out the keyboard at a mere $10.
Dr. Kate Stone, CEO at Novalia explains, “The really clever bit, is being able to literally print touch sensors, with no metallic wiring, using local existing print processes anywhere in the world, and so at very low cost.”
The keyboard itself is a fully functioning QWERTY printed in conductive ink displayed on a standard sheet of A4-sized photo paper and weighs only 30g. The team at Novalia have explained that it can even go as thin as 0.005mm and still function at the same pace as a normal keyboard. This enables it to be printed at ‘100 meters per minute’ on a standard printer.
The low cost and efficiency is exactly what’s exciting about this idea. If it works as well as your everyday keyboard then we’re sure this is a prototype soon to move into production.