The reports about Xiaomi filing for a Force Touch-style patent come after a leak on China’s Weibo where Chinese tipster “Technology Leaksfly” posted saying that “Millet and Samsung also applied for similar patents Force Touch.” Xiaomi literally translates as millet in Chinese.
A report on GforGames also notes that there were speculations on whether Xiaomi will partner with Synaptics to use the company’s ‘ClearForce’ technology on its display.
Xiaomi is not the only company working on bringing this technology to its smartphones. According to a report on AndroidCommunity, Samsung has already filed a patent for the pressure touch 3D screens and it could be a part of the Samsung Galaxy S7.
The patent, which has been published by the Korea Intellectual Property Office (can be seen here), was filed in April 2014 and is called, “Touch Input Apparatus and Electronic Device Having Thereof.”
The patent for Samsung’s technology reads, “The present invention is different touch input device that can provide an image set in advance in a key according to the touch degree…A touch input to a controller for outputting one of a plurality of images that are relevant to the key touch in accordance with the degree.”
In simple language, based on the key touch/pressure applied, a set of images will pop-up on the screen, similar to what Apple’s 3D Touch Display does currently. For example, in the iPhone 6s, you can apply pressure on the Camera app and it will give options on whether you wish to take a selfie, record a video, shoot a slo-mo video or just take pictures. You can pick whichever option you wish to and the camera will open straight in that mode.
Apple is not the only company to introduce 3D Touch enabled screen. Huawei recently introduced the Mate S which uses the same technology, where users can apply pressure on the screen to magnify pictures, play games, etc. The Huawei Mate S’ screen can also be used to measure objects, claims the company.
Whether Xiaomi introduces this feature with their Note 5 smartphone remains to be seen.