Touch Tile



Touch Diagram

The future of bathroom fittings

The bathroom has been a place which has seen very little change over the last hundred years. Single lever taps did not make their appearance until the 1950's, and electronically controlled showers didn’t really exist until the 1990’s. As an example of how slowly the bathroom industry changes, the biggest bathroom exhibition in the world, ISH Frankfurt, is still only held once every two years. Touch sensitive control of our environment has become such a normal way of interaction with products that we take it for granted now. Touch sensitive phones have led this touch revolution, and its beginning to make its way into many other areas of our lives. Even the humble bathroom, after hundreds of years of being an environment where mechanical control was king, is now changing forever.

Have you ever stayed in a hotel where their manual thermostatic shower controller was a little confusing and took more time than you would like to work out how it's used? It seems that the digital revolution in the bathroom is creating even more problems now since digital control can be done in so many different ways.

There are now several bathroom fittings manufacturers, or sanitaryware manufactuers, which produce touch sensitive showers and taps to varying degrees. Some are only partly touch sensitive and also have knobs on them for example. The problem that is beginning to arise is that each manufacturer has a different interface to the others. Each manufacturer has produced their own unique interface, and each will require reading the instructions before use to a greater or lesser degree. They are not intuitive.

Imagine using any digital shower or tap and using it in exactly the same way as any other you have used before. A simple interface where the position of your finger on a square surface gave you the temperature and flow rate you want. With Touchtiles' simple touch sensitive square interface, allowing you to turn on water at the temperature and flow rate you want with a single touch, this will become a practical reality.

Touchtile's interface works in this way. You touch closer to the left for hotter, closer to the right for colder, touching near the top gives slower flow rate, and touching nearer the bottom gives faster flow rate. Therefore, if you touched near the bottom left, you would get hot water at a fast flow rate. If you touched in the middle, you’d get medium temperature and medium flow rate. Touching in the top right corner will give you cold water at slow flow rate.

Manual taps and showers will probably never completely disappear, but just like the typewriter, they will be replaced by digital technology. Touch sensitive control of water is the next facet of our lives to enter the digital age. It’s inevitable.

Written by Patrick Conroy



Single touch shower control –
no more levers or knobs




Single touch tap – for bath,
bathroom basin, or kitchen sink




Providing accurate and safe
control of water temperature
and flow.

Unit 3, 194 High Street, Newmarket, UK, CB8 9AP
Tel: +44 (0) 1638 666611
Design by Cubiqdesign