510-770-1417 | info@reachtech.com

by Reach Technology, a Novanta Company

Reach Launches Next Generation of Display Modules

New product line offers off-the-shelf color touch display modules with proven hard­ware and full software support to speed development and reduce production risk. G2 (Generation Two) modules give products a high-end look with animated controls and glossy indicators.

Reach Technology Inc.,  a recognized leader in embedded touchscreen modules, today launched a new product line to help product designers add user interfaces that look like an iPad® or iPhone® with scrolling, sliding, transparencies, 3D graphics and animations, to their medical or industrial products. These modules:

  • Include High level Integrated Development Environment (IDE) with drag-and-drop visual design tools provided by the Qt Project, an open source collaboration used in thousands of commercial products.
  • Come with example code, video tutorials, and Reach custom visual components.
  • Provide full connectivity options: RS-232, RS-485, CAN bus, Ethernet, USB host, USB device, I2C, SPI, USART.
  • Offer price/performance similar to the highly successful Reach Generation One products.
  • Are field proven with extreme ESD protection and ultra-low EMC for easy regulatory approval.

The G2C1 4.3” Display Modules are ultra compact and combine a multi-function processor board and a 4.3 inch WQVGA (480 x 272) TFT color touch LCD. A wide range of input/output (I/O) options include serial, Ethernet, USB, CAN, and I2C. WiFi is supported via a USB dongle for maximum flexibility with evolving standards. Each module is small enough to fit in a 2U high rack enclosure. 25+KV ESD and FCC Class B EMC test results are provided to ease regulatory compliance. Like all Reach products, these modules are designed for long-term availability with a 10+ year processor life and a multi-sourced, industry standard LCD form factor.

G2C1 4.3” Display Modules have a wide variety of communications interfaces, 8 pins of GPIO, an audio beeper, and battery backed real time clock. Onboard flash memory is used for program and data storage. A “captive” Micro SD card socket (not the push-pull type that can become dislodged during shipping) is provided for optional mass storage. All I/O connectors provide significant locking tabs for reliable operation in industrial applications. Find additional product specifications, images, videos, manuals, and mechanical files.

Note: specialized hardware and software versions of G2 products are available to volume customers.

“The G2 product was instrumental to the success of our newest card shuffler. The support provided by Reach is world class.”

– Jim Helgesen, R&D Manager, SHFL entertainment, Inc.

Complete Development Kits Available To Get Started

Designers can get started with a $449 G2 Development Kit that includes all the hardware, software, and support they need to create a prototype in days, not months. The Display Module included in the kit is ready  for production orders and offers 5-7 years availability at a minimum.

G2 modules run Embedded Linux for stability, reliability, and long term support. Unlike other off-the-shelf hardware products that require specialized Linux expertise to use, Reach offers two Development Kits each targeted to developers’ existing tool knowledge. These are:

Windows Development Kit

This kit is specially designed for Microsoft Windows® users who want immediate results. Developers do not need embedded Linux experience. No kernel building, no File System work; all display module files are accessed via a Windows file server running on the development module. A simple Windows G2Link utility provides push-button access to the display module for configuration and programming.

The Windows Development Kit comes with all the hardware and software you need to get started. Connect the display module to your PC using either Ethernet or supplied WiFi dongle. Use the supplied Qt Creator Integrated Development Environment (IDE) program and the Reach supplied library including buttons, indicators, soft keyboard, and more to create the user interface (UI) using “drag-and-drop” visual editing. Easily place and customize animated widgets, like the ones you would find on an iPhone, such as spinners for selecting values. All UI code is written in high-level QML and JavaScript; since QML and JavaScript are both interpreted languages, there is no compile step, and the same code can run on either the PC or the target device. QML is a markup language that is easily understood by Web designers and UI creators. Design the interface, simulate it on the PC, then push the G2Link “Publish and Run” button to see how it looks and feels on the touch LCD. Kits include sample applications, tutorial videos, and full technical support via email and phone..

Linux Development Kit

This kit provides a full development environment for users with moderate Linux experience that want more development options or need module environment customizations.

The Linux Development Kit gives developers the freedom to code in C, C++, using packages like Qt, GTK+, X11 and others. Included in the kit is a Linux Virtual Machine (VM) with a cross compiler for the display module processor. Even the most experienced developers do not need to build their own kernel and Root File System (RFS) – Reach maintains a full Yocto build system and can provide custom builds as needed. This way, the developer can focus on developing the application, not on compiling the Linux environment.

Development Kits can be purchased online or by contacting Reach Sales (510-770-1417 x112, sales@reachtech.com).

Long-life Hardware Components

Reach modules are designed for long-term availability with a 10+ year processor life and a multi-sourced, industry standard LCD form factor. If something goes obsolete, we’ll handle that.

“We don’t force version change on people. If you get one of our development kits and use it to develop your interface, run it through all the tests, everything works fine, it’s reliable, then from then on you can buy from us a module with that version of software forever. We don’t say, ‘Oh, we don’t support that anymore. Now, you have to move to this.’ No, that doesn’t make any sense.”

– Jonathan More, President and co-founder, Reach Technology, Inc.

Full Lifetime Support: Live, Competent, Responsive Technical Support

Reach has a wealth of experience in interfacing touch display modules to embedded processors. We provide guidance for best practices for both medical and industrial equipment architecture design. Medical equipment is a special case, as an LCD interface falls under “software of unknown provenance” due to the complexity of a GUI system. Reach has developed an architecture to ensure that patient critical data (dose, power, etc.) resides in only one place – typically a small microcontroller – that can be of known provenance for regulatory conformance. This ensures that whatever is displayed on the LCD screen is the true data thus ensuring patient safety.

Made it the USA

Controller boards are made in the USA, modules are assembled in the USA, and all positions are staffed in the USA. This gives you the ability to have appropriate lead times, and to get good quality products.

Reach: 25 Years in Business, Hundreds of Active Customers

Reach has been in business for 25 years, and has been selling LCD touch display modules to hundreds of medical and industrial customers for more than 10 years. Our value proposition is simple: if your company does not have the time, money, or personnel resources to develop internal LCD and controller expertise, we do it for you. The time and money saved may be better used to enhance your company’s core competencies whether they be specific domain expertise or marketing niche.

Move Smoothly to Production with Significantly Shorter Panel Lead Times

We aggregate demand of many customers and stock commonly used panels because LCDs can have 14-week lead times. The LCD business is unique – panel availability is a challenge, specifications are hard to read and confusing (and often wrong), and the technology is evolving quickly. When you buy your LCD products from Reach, supply problems are greatly reduced.

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