Today, we are surrounded by the number of electronic gadgets like smart TVs, laptops, mobile device and more. These electronic devices have become an integral part of our daily life. Among all these electronics devices some devices need to be controlled by us via some kind of the controller.
For example, we need TV remote to control our TV to increase the volume or to change the channel, we need an AC remote to change the temperature of AC . Every device comes with some kind of controller. For ages we have been using a remote control to control these devices. With this advancement in technology, LM Ericsson has developed a new controlling device which could any make wearable device function like the remote.
The wearable device could be anything like the head- mounted display (HMD). LM Ericsson has also filed a patent for this device 18th March 2014.
Why this technology?
The technology is related to a new method for controlling a target device with the help of corresponding control device, target device or any wearable electronic device which are computer programmed.
User interfaces for target devices have been evolving all the time. Let’s consider an example, televisions are generally controlled using infrared (IR) remote controls which give different commands like to increase or decrease the volume or change the channel, etc. These signals are sent from the remote control to the target device using the modulation of infrared signals. But, current remote controls could sometimes be cumbersome to use. That is why Samsung has come with a new device that could enhance our experience of controlling the target device. The new device that Samsung has developed in know as head- mounted display (HMD).
How does this technology work?
The main objective of LM Ericsson is to improve the way that target devices are controlled using a wearable electronic device.
The main device has a specific method of controlling the target device comprising of a display. The method is performed in a control device and following steps are involved in the process: obtaining a first indication of where the user who is wearing the wearable electronic device is looking, then using the first indication to determine whether the user is looking at a predefined peripheral area in relation to the display of the target device or not. On the basis of this information, displaying the user interface for the target device. This method provides a good and very easy way of activating the user interface for the target device.
The process also comprises of the following steps: obtaining the second indication of where the user is looking and then performing a control action of the target device when the second indication indicates that the user is looking at the UI element of the target device. The user could perform control actions by simply looking at a corresponding user interface element of the target device.The user just needs to look at the user interface element of the target device for some predefined amount of time.
The process to determine whether the user is looking at predefined peripheral area also depends on the fact the user should be looking at the predefined area for more than a threshold amount of time to yield a positive result. It helps to reduce the risk of unintentional activation of the user interface. The response time is also adjusted accordingly. The peripheral area could be an area in the corner of the display of the target device.
The control device could also be comprised within the target device, in that case, the step of obtaining the first indication could be comprised of receiving the first indication of a signal from the wearable electronic device.
The step of displaying a user interface is comprised of displaying the user interface on the display of the target device. This is done to ensure that the wearable electronic device is simple to use and are of low cost as the wearable electronic device would not need to have a display. The control device could also be comprised within the wearable electronic device which could have the display and a front facing camera to obtain the first indication using a signal from the front facing camera of the wearable electronic device where the first user is looking.
The next thing for LM Ericsson will be to ensure that they could implement this technology in the real world. There would be many challenges like setting the response time of the device and ensuring that there is no time lag in the response of the control and the target device.