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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 June 2007, 11:08 GMT 12:08 UK
Phone responds to the human touch

A handheld device that recognises the way a finger sweeps across the screen has been developed by Taiwanese phone maker HTC.

The launch of the Touch comes less than three weeks before the iPhone goes on sale.

Apple's long awaited smart phone also has a finger-controlled display.

HTC's TouchFLO screen can tell the difference between a pen and human touch.

Menus can be spun around and opened by moving a finger in a given direction.

In January Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs launched the iPhone by asking a euphoric crowd "Are we going to use a stylus? No, we're not. We're going to use the best pointing device in our world. We're born with 10 of them: our fingers."

Despite his claim that dexterity alone will operate the device, the online accessories retailer Boxware has opted to market a stylus for it.

HTC is not brave enough to abandon the stylus altogether.

It admits that some people will still feel more comfortable turning to a trusty plastic pen for complex actions and is providing one with the phone.

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