EP121 hardware limited to 2 touch points? Problem?

Discussion in 'EP121 Slate' started by RanceJustice, Apr 11, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice Pen Pal - Newbie

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    Morning everyone. I've had my Slate for about 3-4 days now and overall I'm happy with most of the design decisions. The power is appreciated, and while I'd like to have access to an X86 branch of Honeycomb with proper hardware support, I'll make do for the moment on Windows. (I also plan to install Ubuntu 11.04 beta or otherwise, but notice a conspicuous lack of a soft keyboard on install...)

    However, the one thing I found that surprised me in a $1100 high end device is the kind of "MultiTouch" I expect from a cheap no-name China tablet - 2 points and no more. Despite the excellent digitizer, top of the line screen, gorilla glass et al, Asus seemed to figure those using it for multitouch gestures would be placated with only two points of contact. I have been told this is indeed a hardware limit and there is no way around such a thing, regardless of OS, after an initial hope that giving Linux or even OSX a try would open up support beyond what Windows 7 uses.

    Now, I'm left wondering if this will impair my usage and the "future proof" aspects of such a tablet. Wikipedia shows that the old HP TX2 from 2009, sold at $800, had support for 9 touch points by comparison (Though, I am told its touch and digitizer were low-end compared to the sensitivity and feel of the Slate). Unfortunately, Asus doesn't seem to list how many points of touch are available on their spec product pages; perhaps I was wrong in assuming that any high-end device today would have no less than 5.

    Are most of the competing tablets/phones/devices these days being made with 3 or more points of touch in mind? The trackpad on my Envy 14 can handle three-finger gestures, as I am sure can the various Pro level Apple products. Does anyone know if the Asus Transformer (or Slider, MIMO) offers 3 or more points of multitouch? How about competing tablets, ARM or X86 alike, Android (Like the Xoom), iOS (iPad2) or other? Any "boutique" offerings?

    I am a bit worried that this investment may not thrive as it should over the next year or two of tablet growth, if other hardware permits comprehensive 3-10point multitouch and thus more software is designed to take advantage of such things. Much like being equipped with an old single or dual button mouse, your input is viable but not nearly as comfortable and versatile as today's standard of 5 button scroll wheel mice.

    Thanks.
     
  2. darkmagistric

    darkmagistric Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,582
    Likes Received:
    1,685
    Trophy Points:
    181
    While the Ipad does have more then 3 touch points....I almost never really use them. 1-2 touch points does all my needs.

    While nice, 3-10+ touch points really has no practicle application unless you like finger painting or you just have to have 12 gestures instead of 6 or 10, (or whatever the current default is). But If thats all that holding you back from getting an Ep121...really it won't be much of an issue.
     
  3. wicked1

    wicked1 Scribbler - Standard Member

    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    I'm a little upset by this.. I assumed any modern screen would have to have more than 2.. (once the bar has been set, it should be reached!)
    And where it matters... Music! if you're playing, well that's obvious.. Or if you're editing, the ability to move six or so sliders/levels at once is important.
     
  4. murfmiser

    murfmiser Pen Pal - Newbie

    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    15
    I read that it was a limitation with the wacom digitizer, or wacom hardware. I know that asus originally advertised 10 points. It is a bummer, but well worth the great pen input. Best pen input I've ever seen.
     
  5. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice Pen Pal - Newbie

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    While I value the pen-input, I won't be using it very often. My horrible physician's handwriting is what prompted me to originally spend so much time with computers! Needless to say, I'm not an artist and though scribbling down a few pieces of info that just come across better by hand will use the pen input, for daily use I was hoping to be able to at least use multitouch gestures.

    I'd be really interested as I said before in the Asus Transformer, as though I'd be loath to give up the power in the Slate, if it had a ton of touch points I may consider it especially for the lower price. While the Eee is for a niche market, the Transformer is a high end offering but squarely in the "ARM, Android " iPad competitor arena.

    If anything else, I think device manufacturers need to start listing how many simultaneous touch points are on their item instead of just calling it "MultiTouch".

    Finally, this is a bloody longshot, but I read that a certain piece of hardware, different from the digitizer, is in charge of the capacitive multitouch. Would it be possible to replace the 2 point sensor with a 10 point one?

    I'm going to head over to the Asus forums to (respectfully) express my displeasure and I hope anyone else that feels the same way will join me
     
  6. Krelian

    Krelian All about the T5010/T900

    Messages:
    445
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    I think what has to be remembered here is that the digitizer in the EP121 is provided by Wacom - a company that is heavily (if not completely) invested in visual artists.

    For visual artists accuracy is paramount and that is precisely what both the active digitizing and capacitive touch elements are designed for. Wacom sacrificed the ability to detect 3 or more individual touch points in favor of best-in-class position detection.

    Now it may seem odd that they made this sacrifice for something as squishy and inaccurate as a finger I think may have have though that functionally-speaking two touch points really is all that is necessary for the vast majority of people. From a technology stand point it's not their intention to increase the number of touch points just cause everyone else is doing it and it serves no specific purpose.

    Now, wicked1 brings up an excellent example of what more than two points could be used for. Hopefully if enough useful productive situations are posed to Wacom they would eventually expand the hardware, otherwise I just don't see them doing it to "keep up with the Jones' ".
     
  7. Krelian

    Krelian All about the T5010/T900

    Messages:
    445
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    31
    I think your best best actually is to try to appeal to Wacom rather than Asus.
    I'm grateful to Asus for choosing the superior Wacom digitizer over the N-trig and don't want them to get the impression that the majority would prefer an inferior digitizer in such a powerful slate. The EP121 is the first powerful and affordable slate with a Wacom digitizer that we've had in a very long time. It's the presence of that Wacom digitizer that has made the EP121 overwhelmingly popular here.
    Instead the complaints should be lodged with Wacom to improve their product.
     
  8. CF77

    CF77 Love Tablet. Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,303
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    56
    Am I mistaken there is no Wacom touch screen. It is EETI...Complainting to Wacom for product they don't make?
     
  9. RanceJustice

    RanceJustice Pen Pal - Newbie

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    5
    I'm fairly sure this is accurate. Windows Update detects an EETI file in addition to the digitizer and Wacom Pen drivers.

    It was my understanding that the hardware for capacitive multitouch is completely different from the Wacom Digitizer which as you say, is excellent for single point uses, like artistic ones.

    With a different vendor offering a capacitive multitouch solution for the finger, I would expect that Asus would at least have the option available to choose a piece of hardware with 10 point access and still retain their Wacom digitizer and I'm disappointed they did not. Now, perhaps there would have been some sort of trade off, such as increasing price or device thickness/weight, but I would have preferred a similarly high end multitouch plate to compliment the Wacom digitizer, even if it meant a (reasonable) additional cost or a weight or even dimension change.

    Sure, the vast majority of users may not need more than to just pinch and zoom, but when so many other products are showing the wonder of "whole hand" multitouch, there is enough of a growing minority to warrant its inclusion, the very same way that not everyone needs a digitizer in their tablet much less a Wacom model, but it was deemed important enough to a select group for its inclusion even considering the price.

    Either way, we cannot make informed decisions until the number of touch points are available on spec sheets and sites.
     
  10. Raxel

    Raxel Scribbler - Standard Member

    Messages:
    169
    Likes Received:
    42
    Trophy Points:
    41
    AFAIK both HP slate and acer aconia w100 supports 4+ finger input. And I think more than 2-finger input is redundant in general. Yes it may be better if this slate supports 3-and 4-finger flick motion like macbooks...
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page