Hinges aren't the first thing buyers think of when they buy a laptop or cell phone, but the feel as the hinge opens and closes plays a big role in how they view a device.
Positioning and smooth movement are key parameters in today's hinges. "Whatever position you set, it stays there," says Jim Ford, product manager for Southco's hinges and positioners. Different torque settings are also used to provide a nice touch as the hinge pivots.
As system vendors try to differentiate in commodity markets, many are asking for custom parts. "They want combinations, like a laptop screen that pops up 15 degrees or so when it's unlatched, then is counterbalanced so it feels lighter when you lift it," Ford says. For those who fidget by moving lids, lifetimes measured in tens of thousands of cycles are critical. Ford also notes that this type of hinge is gaining use in autos as vehicles use displays for navigation and DVD players.
Click below to read about the featured access hardware product trends:
Detent hinges offer tight closure
Hinges can be customized
Torque Inserts simplify production
Position control hinges are compact