Synaptics demos impressive Windows 8 multitouch trackpad experience [video]

By Tom Warren, on 8th Nov 11 11:06 pm with 27 Comments

Synaptics unveiled a concept driver for its Windows 8 work on Monday.

The driver demonstrates the company’s latest Series 7 ClearPad and ClickPad solutions designed with Windows 8 in mind. The trackpads will compliment Windows 8 by allowing users to multitouch their laptop trackpad and interact with the operating system and applications. Synaptics revealed that the technology will track up to 10 fingers simultaneously when used with a 100x56mm ClickPad.

“The time for PC OEMs to design for Windows 8 with touch has arrived. Synaptics is excited to deliver on the promise of advanced touchscreen and innovative TouchPad technology, which will play an important role in how users interact with their Windows 8 PCs and tablets,” said Mark Vena, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Synaptics’ PC Division. “We’re especially enthusiastic about new product concepts like Intel’s thin and light Ultrabook which will take special advantage of Synaptics’ technology.”

Synaptics plans to demonstrate the technology at Microsoft’s Ecosystem Summit from November 8-10 in Taipei. Check out the video demo below.

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  • Austin

    Holy cow! A multitouch trackpad that makes interactions with the OS more personal! Why didn’t anyone think of this sooner??

  • Anonymous

    So how do you move the mouse cursor around?

  • Anonymous

    I KNEW we were going to see things like this! :)

  • Moirako

    nice! though not practical for big hands
    i wonder if it’s something MS already thought of, or if it’s pure Synaptics innovation.

    • Anonymous

      People were speculating this kind support for the W8 start screen.  It was a no brainer. And I think we will see something silimar for desktop PC as well.

    • Mitch Rf

      I think it’s time for companies to start producing “widescreen” trackpads. 

  • Anonymous

    OMG ! THIS IS GOOD!! I can see clearly now Windows 8 taking over the old desktop!!

  • Marlommauroperez

    That’s hardly impressive.

    • Penta2100

      Well atleast its a start

    • oolong2

      Yeah….  Exactly how is this a concept?   It’s just a multi-touch panel used as a touch pad….   

      You can get a multitouch overlay from Ebay stick it in your trackpad area, plug it into your USB and you have the exact same thing….  You just have to calibrate it buy guestimating, which isn’t too hard if the overlay is in the same shape as your screen…

      It would be better if they embedded a tiny lcd under the  panel so that you could actually see what you’re touching. 

  • warex3D

    Wow JUST GREAT!!!!! imagine all the possibilities!!!!!!!!!!! I’m a 3d animator, so it would cool if I can move my 3d space with that trackpad!!!!

    • Anonymous

      Yes. But only this because you will not have a cursor to select things.

  • Anonymous

    This is exactly how I want to use Windows 8 on my non-touch screen laptops

  • Anonymous

    one word : Awesome
    I stopped using my Win 7 PC momentarily to use my Macbook Air and the thing i like about the Macbook Air is that the multi touch trackpad works like a charm

  • Brandon

    The multi-touch for navigating left and right though the start screen, for example, may not be anything new. HOWEVER, this is not what I saw from Microsoft when they demo’d W8. To my recollection, they were talking about some arrow keys or something to that effect!  Furthermore, what was impressive was the use of several touch/data points to manipulate 3D objects and do other things.  

    In a word, I think that today’s world of teamism/one-up-manship (team MSFT, team Apple, team Google, fanboy this, troll that) has thrown some of you into misreading the spirit of the article. The way I read it was that an OEM (Synaptics) was trying to assist Microsoft with delivering the beautiful W8 to us, the endusers–i.e., not a versus, or a who thought of it first, situation.


    How ’bout focusing on making touchscreens less expensive for laptops/netbooks & get rid of the trackpad altogether. 

    • Brandon

      Because, particularly when one wants to do desktop-type things, it’s unnatural at this point in our evolutionary process  to touch at a vertical position (like at an ATM machine) for extended periods. I think Apple or some other company did research to this effect, and people found it uncomfortable, a touchscreen desk/laptop. the hands prefer to be parallel to a horizontal plane.

      I used to imagine my dell monitor was touchable so I could flick through the cover flow of itunes. and this year I was using my sister’s imac and the same procedure can be accomplished with the flat trackpad–minus havin to  reach across and touch the screen

  • Anonymous

    It would be nice if the touchpads had some sort of proximity sensor which shows on the screen just before you are about to touch the trackpad. This way you’d know exactly where you are on the screen.

    I’s also like MS to use their Kinect technology to control the screen via webcam.

    • phil jay

      Absolutely. Without it you are very inaccurate as seen in the video.. But when you knew where your fingers are, this would absolute killer feature!

  • Owais_503

    So how do you move the mouse cursor around?     

    • Anonymous

      Yeah. People are missing that this whole concept isn’t working. You can’t see what you will touch.

    • Brandon

      With Apple’s magic mouse, moving the actual mouse moves the cursor. In the case of the laptop, they could just let one finger movement move the cursor and two finger swipes advance the screen left and right. Problem solved.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve been asking for a way to do this for a while…GREAT JOB SYNAPTICS!

  • Anonymous

    well there the answer to all the people who said w8 isn’t practical for desktop computers. You just the easy of navigating the metro UI, changing to desktop, switching programs, and manipulating objects. I believe those were all the things people thought would cause w8 to fail. I think this should erase doubt from all but the most die hard trolls.

  • Hugh


  • Anonymous

    This is brilliant, and it solves most navigational issues i personally have with W8 on my test laptop.

  • Anonymous

    When are they going to implement multi-touch like this into WPM or WP8…are they ever going to ?