There are a lot of ways to interact with smartphone apps using your fingers. You can tap, swipe, pinch, or long-press a touchscreen display. If you have a phone with a “force touch” or “3D touch” display, you can also use hard or soft presses.
But Microsoft is working on yet another way to interact with phones, using something the company calls “pre-touch.”
‘Pre-Touch’ intends to give your phone the sense of where your hands are in the space around it. You can easily understand from the name that this can sense whether you are going to tap before you actually do it. Also, it can tell you the way you’re holding your device.
Hovering your fingers over the phone while watching a video will bring up playback controls – but doing so while gripping the phone with only one hand will cause the app to display only essential controls on the side that you’re holding the device.
The team at Microsoft Research will present its paper, entitled Pre-Touch Sensing for Mobile Interaction at the Association for Computing Machinery’s Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems this month in San Jose.
Check out the video below!