Haptics derives its name from the Greek word haptesthai, literally meaning “to touch.” Its technologies are associated with the sense of touch, in particular about providing the very important tactile feedback that lends completeness to a user’s experience.
Quantum jumps in haptic actuation technology has spurred development of “smarter” devices like touchscreen buttons that feel real to the user. Ramamurthy says, “At the broadest level, haptic actuators have graduated from motor-based design to material-based designs. Reliance on materials allows designers to free themselves from the vagaries of power supply variations in characteristics. Having gotten a freer hand in engineering haptic responses, designers have now focused their attention to fine tuning, calibrating and targeting haptic feedback in order to achieve maximum impact.”