The tablet device you can control…with your mind.

24th April 2013

Korean tech supergiant Samsung has set it sights on something new and groundbreaking, having seen it’s mobile devices already achieve global domination over it’s nearest competition.

Their latest smartphone, the Galaxy S4, is set for release later this week and offers a feature on it’s video function that allows users to pause a video simply by looking away from the screen, and use eye movements to scroll through content.

However, Samsung is looking to take this innovative technology to the next level with a fully-fledged tablet device that you can control fully simply by using your mind.

Working in conjunction with US researchers, they have demonstrated how the user can concentrate on a blinking icon in order to launch an application on a Galaxy tablet device.

The clever new technology relies on the user wearing a special cap studded with EEG-monitoring electrodes – so would hardly look aesthetically pleasing or be convenient to the user in it’s current form – but it is hoped that it can be developed into a more streamlined product in the years to come, making it an invaluable device for people with mobility issues as well as those looking for general day-to-day use.

Samsung Lead Researcher Insoo Kim proposes that using mind control for devices is naturally the “next step” in technology as users can already use voice, touch, gesture, and eye movement to control current mobile devices.

During testing it was noted that users when controlling the table using their mind, they could average around one selection every five seconds with an accuracy rate of between 80 and 95% – a promising start for technology in it’s early development phases.

Currently the cap required requires liquid between the scalp and sensor, but developer Roozbeh Jafari of the University of Texas (who is working with Samsung) is already well on his way to coming up with a new cap that is dry and also less intrusive on the user.

It is hoped the technology can also be used for groundbreaking medical solutions, particularly for gauging moods and enabling a better understanding of those in comas or with locked-in syndrome.

Whilst currently nowhere near usable by the general population, there is good feeling about the fact that technology being developed initially for commercial purposes can then double as a brilliant solution for medical practices for the general betterment of life for everyone in the developed world.

 

Robin James

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