Way back in November, Synaptics announced plans to launch a new PC notebook touch pad that would support multi-touch features. At the time, the company showed off how the touch pad would work with the Developer Preview version of Windows 8 and its UI, then known as "Metro".
Today, News.com and other media outlets got a chance to get some hands-on time with the touch pad technology, which Synaptics now calls the ForcePad. The biggest difference is the lack of physical click keys; the ForcePad is made with just one thin pad. The ForcePad is also pressure sensitive, with the company claiming that it allows PC notebook users to use up to five fingers at one time; they can press down on the new pad with 64 different levels of pressure.
Obviously, this kind of PC touch pad will allow notebooks without a touch screen to still take advantage of Windows 8 and its newly branded "Modern" user interface. A stand alone ForcePad could also be made that will allow PC desktop users to interact with the Windows 8 UI without having to touch a monitor.
The bad news? Synaptics says their ForcePad technology won't be ready until sometime in 2013, which means that notebooks won't have this hardware when Windows 8 launches in late October.