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Laptop Makers and Touch: Who Wants to Go First?

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Wired has an article today saying that laptop makers are shying away from Multi-touch technology. On the surface (pun?) that is a correct analysis in my view. There’s lots of talk about multi-touch on trackpads, and yes, there’s talk about what Windows 7 will (or will not) bring to the multi-touch table. But, in my view, the lack of any compelling applications that take advantage of touch is a key to why we aren’t seeing a move forward yet. That’s been said many, many times before, and let’s face it, beyond on-screen navigation there’s just not much out there to get your fingers going.

The other key here when it comes to multi-touch has to do with the digitizers. N-trig and Dell have worked together to bring multi-touch to the XT, but that still seems to be a long way off. Wacom is keeping very, very quiet about any plans they may or may not have for the future. We’ve just seen two excellent new Tablet PCs (ok, they are both really refreshes) introduced into the market, neither of which has any touch capability at all. Is that a statement?

I think we’re in a wait and see game here for the reasons I’ve stated above, and I would imagine we’ll be there until the technology and the use case work together to create a compelling scenario. 

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