While it’s probably fair to say that today’s devices aren’t hugely exciting (can you say “5in 1080p”, “phablet” and “Android”?), you can always count on patent submissions for some outside-the-box thinking.
The latest patent-based beast to raise our eyebrows is something called the Sony EyePad, which is kinda sorta part tablet, part augmented reality console accessory.
Loving the cheeky name, though EyePad is more of a nod to – or continuation of – Sony’s EyeToy and EyePet themes, as opposed to a dig at the iPad.
How does it work? Well, the interesting thing is the presence of little cameras in the corners of the display, used to detect movement. As such, users could potentially interact with gestures above - as opposed to on - the display.
I’ll hand you over to the patent submission for a more technical explanation. This particular excerpt describes interacting with an EyePet, something that has our Jan all hot and bothered. Ready? Go:
“The depth maps from the two stereoscopic cameras describe the location of points on the surface of the user's index finger within the common volume, and hence it is possible to calculate whether those surface points coincide with the surface model of the virtual EyePet.
“This gives the user the precision to stroke the EyePet's ear, tap its nose, tickle its tummy, or otherwise interact with it in very specific ways, and moreover to do so for whatever arbitrary position or orientation they are holding the EyePad in.”
Incidentally, Sony is expected to launch the PlayStation 4 later today. Er, if it hasn’t already. I’m writing this from the past, like some sort of 1pm-based ghost.