Universal Stylus Initiative Releases Breakthrough Specification 1.0

The USI 1.0 Specification provides independent hardware vendors (IHVs) and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) for the first time an industry standard, non-proprietary, active stylus protocol. This solution will enable the OEM, IHV and software ecosystem to develop a new generation of active styluses that provide consumers a consistent, customizable and interoperable experience across make, model and form-factor. The USI 1.0 Specification also enables new usages for active styluses, such as multiple styluses operating simultaneously on a single device. The USI Specification can be implemented on a wide range of touch-enabled devices, including phones, tablets, computing and entertainment platforms.

Approximately 259 million tablets will ship in 2016 according to Gartner, Inc. Most of those tablets will be active-stylus-capable and ship bundled with a stylus. Touch Display Research predicts that active-stylus market revenue will double from nearly $3 billion in 2016 to almost $6 billion over the next four years.

The development of USI 1.0 Specification was a collaboration among several companies including multinational OEMs (Dell Inc.; HP Inc.; Lenovo Group Ltd.), as well as silicon and component providers (Atmel/Microchip Corporation; Cirque Corporation; Hanvon Technology Co., Ltd.; Intel Corporation; Sharp Corporation; Synaptics Inc.; Wacom Co., Ltd.; Waltop International Corporation). Sharp Corporation, Hanvon Technology Co., Ltd and Waltop International Corporation recently demonstrated a working implementation of the USI 1.0 Specification. (Watch the video).

USI 1.0 Stylus and Device Specification

The USI 1.0 Specification defines a standard signaling mechanism and communication protocol between a stylus and a touch-enabled device. The 1.0 Specification features a robust two-way protocol designed from the ground up to support a rich set of base features including multiple, simultaneous styluses as well as extensibility for per-vendor customization and future usages.

Users will be able to use a single USI stylus across all of their USI-enabled devices and any USI stylus shipped with devices will work with other USI-enabled devices, even those from different manufacturers. Additionally, the USI 1.0 Specification also provides the capability to use multiple styluses from different manufacturers on a single device. This is a breakthrough capability and industry-first enabled by the USI 1.0 Specification.

An additional benefit of the USI standard is the ability to deliver a consistent stylus user experience across platforms. This consistency and ease-of-use, coupled with interoperability, increases the consumer appeal of an active stylus and will help proliferate the technology.

For more details, visit http://www.universalstylus.org

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