Aug 10, 2012

How can you use capacitive screens when you are wearing gloves?

Ok, I know this question may sound a little weird, but I promise that I'm not walking around my office all day wearing gloves. No matter how dapper that might look, now that I think about it. :-)

I'm going on a motorcycle trip next week, and I want to use my smartphone's GPS for navigation in some area that I'm not familiar with. The problem is that capacitive screens only respond to conductive materials like your finger or a specially designed stylus. I thought the leather on my glove might work, but it doesn't. Oh, and I'm not a Harley kind of guy, so fingerless gloves are not an option I would consider. I guess I don't absolutely need to interact with the device while riding, but it would be nice, and I could avoid the hassle of being forced to stop, remove my gloves, then do what I need to do. Is there a way to get a capacitive screen to work with gloves on?


The choices listed in the article that was linked to in the earlier answer are good for general use, but they aren't ideal for providing protection while riding a motorcycle.  Aerostich makes a glove that addresses this issue, although it might be too late to get them for this trip.  They use special conductive stitching in the fingertips to allow the screen to recognize input. I have the non-tech version without the conductive stitching, and they are brilliant gloves. They are made from elkskin, which wears forever and is very supple. It also gives you a surprisingly good amount of feel through the gloves, so you get some tactile feedback.  The Aerostich gloves cost about $60, but that's a reasonable price for high quality gear.  If you check out the link, there is actually a video of the gloves being used with an iPhone, so you can see how well they work.

Here's an article with six different gloves you can use with touchscreen devices.

6 Great Gloves for Touchscreen Gadget Lovers

"Well, the weather outside is frightful (in the Northern Hemisphere anyway), so you just might be regretting your choice of a touchscreen-equipped handset as your portable phone. Take your gloves off to send a text? Not in this weather.

As many of you will know, capacitive touchscreen devices (such as the iPhone, iPod touch, Droid, Pre, Storm, etc.) require tiny amounts of charge from your fingertips to operate. Because of this, sticking a great big glove between your finger and the screen kills the conductivity.

Never fear! An entire industry has sprung up to stop you from getting cold hands when using your touchscreen phone outdoors. We’ve hand-picked (see what we did there?) the best six pairs of gloves for gadget-lovers this winter, so have a look through our choices below and let us know your faves in the comments."
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