Touchscreen Technology: A New Gateway to Products, Services

Frequent fliers know that checking in for flights is much easier and quicker today thanks to self-serve kiosks that enable users to zip through the process with the touch of a finger.

From car infotainment systems to the most advanced communication devices, touchscreens are becoming increasingly popular, converting everyday tasks into fast and fun experiences. Whether they are stopping by the ATM or casting their vote in the latest election, touchscreen technology is enabling people to do so with speed and ease.

An intuitive and interactive quality makes touchscreens appealing to all ages and in a variety of industries. Without the learning or physical limitations of a mouse and keyboard, touch technology is open to everyone, even young children or people with disabilities. Toy manufacturers, for instance, are taking advantage of touch technology to provide entertaining, yet educational, toys for children that are too young to have developed the motor skills required for a regular computer.

At retail outlets, store merchandisers are using touch technology as a new marketing strategy to engage consumers, while delivering product information at the touch of a finger. For instance, FAO Schwarz has installed 17-inch Planar touchscreens as a consumer design center for the Hot Wheels Custom Car Factory in its New York store. Using the Planar touchscreen kiosk, shoppers can customize their own Hot Wheels car with special colors, designs, wheels and rims.

The restaurant industry also is seeing the benefits of touch-integrated POS systems to improve order-processing time. Easy-to-use touchscreen devices enable servers to enter food orders faster and more accurately, enhancing the overall dining experience. Tableside units provide customers with a variety of entertainment and information options, such as playing video games or surfing the Web.

Other industries embracing touchscreen technology include automotive (car rental information portals, GPS systems), industrial (ATMs, gas station service pumps) and health care (outpatient information kiosks).

Receptive consumers and falling prices have enabled touch to spread its reach across a wide range of markets. As a result, this technology is making strong inroads as a primary way for consumers to get products, services and information.

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