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How to Turn Any Display Into a Touch Screen

Touch screens are becoming a more popular feature on laptops, but not every model comes with one. Enter the Neonode AirBar, a $49 slim sensor that attaches to the bottom of any Windows or Chrome OS PC's display to enable touch. 

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The peripheral emits light that, when interrupted, is used to determine gestures, including those for scrolling, tapping and pinch-to-zoom. It magnetically attaches to the screen and is powered by a USB port. Because the light is used to detect touch, the AirBar doesn't require a bare human finger like capacitive digitizers do. Neonode claims that gloves, paintbrushes and long fingernails will all work. 

A 15.6-inch version of the AirBar will be available on the product's website for $49 for a limited time. The company did not announce models for other display sizes. We are excited to see this technology in action at CES 2016 in Las Vegas in January.