Texas Instruments, Media Tek & Elliptic Labs have demonstrated an interesting new technology at CES 2020. Devices such as lamps and smart speakers can be controlled using gesture recognition & presence detection.
Elliptic Labs have developed a technology called Inner Reflection. Using ultrasound and artificial intelligence a device is able to tell when someone has entered a room and how near or far away they are. At it’s most basic, this would mean that lights could turn off or on when a person enters a room, but more than that, thanks to the proximity sensing functionality a device such as a smart speaker could adjust it’s volume according to how far away you were.
Using the same ultrasound and AI technology, Elliptic Labs say that very accurate gesture control is possible. This obviously would mean you could interact with devices in far more complex ways such as being able to navigate around a smart phone etc.
Although optical motion detection and gesture recognition have been around for a long time, it has always been very limited and of not much practical use as a method for controlling devices.
If this new ultrasound implementation works as well as promised then we could finally have a usable, practical user interface for controlling gadgets in our home, and from an accessibility aspect, the more options we have when it comes to how we interact with devices the better.