Atmel Launches Home Appliance-Certified QTouch Capacitive Touch Controllers



Atmel® Corporation (NASDAQ: ATML), a leader in microcontroller and touch solutions, today announced the new family of QTouch® capacitive touch controllers is International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and European Standards (EN) 60730 ready for the rapidly growing home appliance market. IEC/EN 60730 standards cover mechanical, electrical, electronic, EMC, and abnormal operation of appliances. These certifications assure safe operation within an appliance if a fault within the system is detected by shutting it down. Selecting the right microcontroller (MCU) increases the ease of passing the certification and helps bring a product faster-to-market. With this certification, manufacturers can now easily design household appliances that are IEC/EN-ready with Atmel capacitive touch controllers for buttons, sliders and wheels. This certification, combined with Atmel's superior conducted immunity (CI), make Atmel the leading capacitive touch supplier for all home user appliance interfaces. Conducted immunity is the ability for a device to perform all operations despite unwanted 'noisy' RF voltages and currents carried by external wires and cables. The new capacitive touch controllers include the Atmel AT42QT1244, AT42QT1245, AT42QT2640 and AT42QT1481. All devices are IEC/EN 60730 Class B certified and include Failure Mode Effect Analysis (FMEA) support to monitor self-tests to ensure the system is running properly. In addition, all the new touch controllers include Atmel's patented Adjacent Key Suppression(TM) (AKS(TM)) mode which provide more precise discrimination between closely spaced keys; moisture tolerance with Atmel's patented QMatrix(TM) technology for extreme environments; and supports high button counts through 24-, 48- or 64- acquisition channels. All Atmel touch controllers are ready to use with no MCU programming and configurations are completed through UART, SPI or I2C interfaces. "Capacitive touch buttons are expected to show strong adoption in the home appliance market quickly, replacing mechanical buttons in the $90B home appliance market," said Randy Lawson, principal analyst and manager of Consumer Electronics and Display Electronics research with IHS iSuppli. "Unlike mechanical buttons, touch interfaces do not wear out, are splash proof, easy to clean and support aesthetically pleasing front panels with no protruding buttons. Companies with IEC/EN-certified products, such as Atmel, are well positioned for growth in this space. IEC/EN-certified products offer a solid assurance that manufacturers will achieve certification for their household appliance designs." "We are excited to be one of the few capacitive touch controller suppliers to be IEC/EN-certified," said Geir Kjosavik, director of AVR segment marketing, Atmel Corporation. "We have a strong commitment to helping our customers bring their products faster-to-market by developing products that are easy-to-use and industry-certified. These certified products help simplify the manufacturers' design process for various household appliances." "The launch of this device family is further testament Atmel is a leader in the touch market," Kjosavik concluded. For more information on the new Atmel home appliance-certified touch controllers, please visit To see Atmel's latest videos, visit the Atmel YouTube Channel at You can also follow Atmel on Twitter or on Facebook at Pricing and Availability Pricing for the Atmel AT42QT1481, AT42QT1244, AT42QT1245, AT42QT2640 start at USD $2.48 for 1,000-piece quantities. Production quantities for the Atmel AT42QT1481 are available now, while production quantities for the AT42QT1244, AT42QT1245, AT42QT2640 are available in Q4 FY2011. About Atmel Atmel Corporation (Nasdaq: ATML) is a worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of microcontrollers, capacitive touch solutions, advanced logic, mixed-signal, nonvolatile memory and radio frequency (RF) components. Leveraging one of the industry's broadest intellectual property (IP) technology portfolios, Atmel is able to provide the electronics industry with complete system solutions focused on industrial, consumer, communications, computing and automotive markets.