China’s GoerTek, Intel back force-sensor startup
Intel is the largest semiconductor vendor in the world and GoerTek is a leading supplier of microphone and other audio components for smartphones and tablet computers and is headquartered in Weifang, Shandong province in China.
Sierra’s Managing Director Ben Yu will join Steve Nasiri, the founder of InvenSense, on NextInput’s board of directors.
NextInput said it is preparing increased production capacity in anticipation of customer demand and develop a next generation of MEMS-based ForceTouch sensors.
NextInput (Milpitas, Calif.) was founded in 2012 by Ian Campbell and Ryan Diestelhorst as a spin-off from Georgia Institute of Technology to commercialize a pressure-sensitive method of interfacing with electronics devices. The company says that when multiple sensors are placed under a display surface it offers a lower-cost solution that also consumes less power when compared with capacitive touch. The technology is capable of multipoint touch that can sense the location and amount of force from each touch point down to sub-millimeter spatial resolution, and sub-millinewton force resolution, the company claims.
NextInput relocated from Georgia to Silicon Valley earlier in 2015.
The market is ripe for the adoption of force-based 3D touch, for which NextInput has the best solution," said Ali Foughi, CEO of NextInput, in a statement. "We believe NextInput’s innovative solutions will disrupt the multi-billion unit touch market," said Ben Yu of Sierra Ventures.