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Projection Keyboard  –  The future input device

There was a time when a single computer occupied the space of a room but now the technology has reached its new heights to the extent that now one doesn’t need the whole of a computer to be carried, not even the laptops. Previously when we had cathode ray tube based desktops, nobody could imagine that laptop would emerge. Then with time the size reduced to tablets and smartphones where you are free to carry and retrieve whatever information you want at any place in the world.

In general, a computer needs at least a monitor, a keyboard and a mouse along with the CPU, RAM, cache and a hard disk to function. These are the physical devices that need space. With time laptops emerged that are light-weighted but that is not the end. Recently devices like virtual projection keyboards are made available in the market. What are they? But before we proceed for that let’s now understand the concept “virtual keyboard”. Around 2 to 3 years back when I was logging in into my bank account to make online payment I saw the option of virtual keyboard. That time I didn’t understand what that was. When a user opts for virtual keyboard he or she doesn’t have to use the physical input device to enter the password. Instead of that, they are given the soft keyboard right on the screen that resembles the image of the literal device. This is done in order to prevent the person from keystroke logging. Through keystroke logging the actions of the user are monitored without them being aware of, as and when they type the keys. This technique is done for hacking the password. Virtual keyboards are hence popular due to the same reason and are indeed trustworthy.

Now comes the projection keyboard. Projection keyboard is that kind of input device that projects the virtual keyboard on any plane surface which the user can use that as an input device just as the physical device is used. The pressed buttons are taken as input. The main advantage is to reduce the surface area that a physical device actually needs while traveling. The devices currently available in the market use bluetooth or USB connectivity that enables point to multi-point connection with devices like mobile phones, tablets, etc. that have inbuilt bluetooth. The way through which both the bluetooth devices are connected depends on the type of devices used. The light source usually used is red diode laser. The positional information (which key gets struck) is received by the micro-controller present in sensor module. This interprets the events and then the communication takes place through relevant interface to external output devices.

The projection keyboard is capable to detect up to 400 characters per minute. The usual dimension of this virtual projection keyboard is 295 mm X 95 mm. The projection device uses lithium ion batteries and can work continuously for 120 minutes straight for typing. The sizes vary but it is not more than 35 mm X 92 mm X 25mm.