Microsoft chooses fabric keyboards

Microsoft has chosen Eleksen to design and manufacture the peripherals for their new ultra-mobile PCs, code-named ‘Origami’.

Microsoft has chosen Eleksen, the UK manufacturer of ElekTex ‘smart fabric’ interfaces, to design and manufacture the peripherals for its new ultra-mobile PCs, code-named ‘Origami’. The collaboration was announced at CeBIT.

The peripherals will include a Bluetooth fabric keyboard and a USB keyboard, a carrying case with an integrated keyboard and multimedia controls.

“We are pleased to be working alongside Microsoft to bring new portable interface designs to the market,” said Robin Shephard, CEO of Eleksen. “The focus of our business is to use ElekTex to revolutionise the way that consumers interact with their electronics devices. The opportunity to offer solutions for peripherals design and development for the new ultra-mobile PC is an unprecedented opportunity for us to participate in the birth of an entirely new breed of computing and entertainment devices.”

Eleksen says this represents the most important commercial milestone for the company since its inception in 1998, when two animatronics engineers from the BBC political satire ‘Spitting Image’ founded the company.

Otto Berkes, general manager of the Mobile Platforms Division at Microsoft, said, “We’re glad to have an innovative industry partner such as ElekTex on board to design new technologies for Ultra-Mobile PCs. ElekTex smart fabric interfaces offer capabilities that are well matched to complement the functionality and portability of new ultra-mobile PCs.”