Samsung's next smartphone to scroll by watching your eyes
Chalk up one more Galaxy trick that the iPhone can't perform
Samsung's next Next Big Thing, the Galaxy S IV smartphone, will scroll text by watching your eyeballs.
So says an unidentified Samsung employee tattling to The New York Times' Bits blog, a worthy who "spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the news media" – a time-honored custom of companies that want to inject buzz-building rumors into the hype-o-sphere.
According to the anonymous source, the Galaxy S IV will track your eyes as they reach the bottom of a page of text, then scroll the next paragraphs into view so that your fingers need not do the walking.
The source did not say whether the feature would be demoed at the Galaxy S IV's coming out party, scheduled for March 14 in New York City, but one can assume that if it does exist, it will be – if only to trumpet a feature that's not available in Samsung's übercompetitor, Apple's iPhone, and Cupertino's most recent version of its mobile operating system, iOS 6.1.2.
Bolstering the believability of the personally publicity-shy Samsungonian are a pair of trademark filings, one in the US and one in the EU. The US trademark for "Samsung Eye Scroll" was filed on February 5 of this year, and describes "Computer application software having a feature of sensing eye movements and scrolling displays of mobile devices, namely, mobile phones, smart phones and tablet computers according to eye movements; digital cameras; mobile telephones; smart phones; tablet computers."
The EU trademark, filed this January 23 in the wonderfully named Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market, is not as specific, merely describing "Eye Scroll" as being "Application software for smart phones and tablet computers; digital cameras; mobile telephones; smart phones; tablet computers."
Samsung's current flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S III, already performs one trick that requires it to keep its beady cyclopean eye on you: Smart Stay lights up the handset's display when you're looking at it, and powers it down when you look away.
Smart Stay sounds as if it could be a convenient battery saver, but The Reg is not convinced that Eye Scroll would be much more than a page-popping distraction.
But if Eye Scroll does, indeed, prove to be both useful and popular, we can only assume that Apple will adopt some similar technology, and the lawsuits will inexorably churn on. And on. ®
And, I presume Apple, does nothing "gimmicky"?
Little wonder you don't use your real name - and how ignorant you are of others needs.
I know a person who has spent most of his life with a stick, dripping spittle, picking away at a Saran-wrapped keyboard. He had/has no meaningful movement in his arms.
The day he acquired a rudimentary voice/text software package was the first day of the nest stage of his life, Dragon Dictating has improved by leaps and bounds, as has my acquaintance's abilities and work output.
To someone, what you call a gimmick, is another life-changing happening.
Stephen Hawking, CH, CBE, FRS, FRSA, the UK theoretical physicist, cosmologist and author has achieved more success than many fully able people. And he had technology make his life that more easy.
Now, with Samsung's technology, and likely quite unintentionally, yet other physically challenged people have gained yet more independence.
Sounds cool in theory
But then I think about how when I'm watching TV I'm often half watching and half reading sports news on my phone, and my eyes keep going back to the same place on the screen to read the same paragraph over and over because by trying to do two things at once I'm doing neither well. I'd hate to have that paragraph scroll out of view if its at the bottom of the screen. Or even scroll to the top, since I haven't really registered that paragraph in my brain I sort of need the one I know I've read above it for context to find my place - especially if my place moves without me wanting it.
This sounds like one of those things that would be cool to impress your friends "hey look what my phone can do" but most people would probably turn it off. If they can make it work well enough that you don't get annoyed by it on a daily basis, they deserve a gold star.
Ideas bases on Pr0n
One hand holds the phone, the other hand is busy elsewhere. All it takes is a flick of the eyes and the next little pr0n video magically appears before beholder...
Could be a nuisance browsing here. Roll eyes = go back to first ElReg comment.
Having sat in on quite a few eye-tracking studies now, I'm pretty certain this will just piss people off because viewing behaviour isn't linear.