Microsoft Leads Massive Investment In Israeli Multi-touch Startup

Microsoft has joined the league of investors who are a pouring a whopping $24million in N-trig, an Israeli firm that specializes in multi-touch and dual mode pen technology.

The consortium of investors, which in addition to the software giant include Aurum Ventures, Evergreen Venture Partners, Challenger Ltd., and Canaan Partners, would fuel the projects aimed at developing touch-based notebooks, and other convertible computers, N-trig notified.

Touch-screen input technology from N-trig has so far been employed in Dell Latitude XT and HP’s TouchSmart txt2 notebook, with the company has vowed to come up with advanced OEM designs in the upcoming year.

N-trig’s signature DuoSense technology has already been incorporated in Windows 7, offering multi-touch capabilities to the new operating system from Microsoft.

DuoSense technology is designed to recognize input from user’s finger or a stylus pen, however, the technology also supports multi-touch, so that it can acknowledge the input from multiple fingers, thereby enabling several gestures, such as “pinching” to minimize the size of the window.

Speaking about using the funding offered, N-trig’s CEO Ben-David said in a statement, “We will use this funding to keep fuelling technology innovations in Hands-on computing, providing leading OEM brands with new product platforms”.

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Our Comments

The future is bright for Multitouch it seems. Microsoft may still be secretly hoping that mostly touchscreen UMPC succeed against mainly keyboard-based Netbooks. However, we don't envisage a future on the desktop for multitouch except for very exotic applications because of cost constraints, physical limitations and learning curve.

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