FT81x Series for Higher Resolution HMI Construction

Domestic Appliance-HMIsTouch-enabled human machine interfaces (HMIs) are now employed in wide array of industry sectors – including domestic appliances, home automation systems, industrial control systems and door entry systems. The emergence of multi-touch functionality is adding a further dimension to modern HMI implementations, allowing gesture recognition to be benefitted from. The next step seems likely to be deployment of HMIs based that use larger format higher resolution displays – via which more detailed image content and potentially eve video content can be accessed. Semiconductor manufacturers need to bring solutions to market offering the performance required for constructing high resolution HMIs while also addressing budgetary constraints, limited board space and time-to-market pressures.

White good and office equipment manufacturers are looking to add to the feature sets of their products. Through the incorporation of larger format displays with greater colour depth and the ability to simultaneously determine multiple touch points the overall user experience can be greatly enhanced. Short animation films can be used to show the user how to carry out particular tasks – such as dealing with paper jams, or replacing component parts. Manufacturers are now seeing the value of implementing HMIs that are based on an object-oriented topology which has far lower memory and data transfer requirements. This approach, which was pioneered by FTDI Chip’s Embedded Video Engine (EVE) platform, means that the display treats image content as objects, rather than complex items made up of many pixels. Via EVE, images are rendered line-by-line (at 1/16th pixel resolution) as opposed to pixel-by-pixel and it is this that results ii reduced bandwidth and data storage demands. FTDI Chip’s FT81x series takes EVE technology beyond its original parameters, enabling larger high resolution HMI systems to be created. These ICs have higher resolutions than the previous generation – supporting 800×600 pixels rather than 512×512 pixels – making them better suited to support larger format displays (7-inches and above) with greater image clarity. The available memory has been expanded from 256kBytes to 1Mbytes so that the additional data can be dealt with. Smoother video playback is supported and there is also a screen rotation facility.

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