Get Ready for Touch-Free Televisions...
...and phones, and tablets, starting next year
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Dec 19, 2011 11:03 AM CST
A frame grab from promotional video at XTR3D.com.   (XTR3D.com)

(Newser) – Touchscreens are so 2011. Starting as soon as next year, we'll be able to manipulate our phones with a wave of the hand. And that's just the beginning: Touch-free technology could soon take over our TVs, our tablets, and other devices, the BBC reports. One company behind the shift is Israel's XTR3D, which recently scored an $8 million investment; the firm expects the first touchless smartphone to hit the market in 2012.

Such technology isn't, of course, entirely new: Microsoft's motion-detecting Kinect gaming system has been around since last year. But while Kinect uses a collection of sensors, microphones, and cameras to do its work, XTR3D's equipment simply uses 2D cameras like the one on your phone. But it goes beyond phones and TVs: It "can be installed into any consumer electronics device," says a rep for the company; in fact, a computer loaded with XTR3D's software can be used to play a Kinect game. And don't expect it to be out of your reach. "Our target is to penetrate the market, so it will be something for everyone to try out."

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Comments
Showing 3 of 16 comments
crafter67
Dec 19, 2011 11:52 PM CST
So...if you put it in your pocket or purse (and forget to lock the keypad) it will start doing things even if nothing touches it...I see a lot of random calls being made
spdavid
Dec 19, 2011 1:53 PM CST
This will be "cutting edge" only until Voice Recognition Technology is perfected,which is probably only a few years away.Once your gadgets can be controlled by voice nobody will want to look like someone trying to get a cab just to change tv channels or send a text.I certainly wouldn't do any long term investing in companies betting all the marbles on "touch-free" unless they are also involved in VRT.
WarmWeatherGuy
Dec 19, 2011 1:33 PM CST
I'm so far behind. I don't even have a "touchy" TV yet and they're already obsolete. I'm still using a remote control from my couch while everyone else is touching their TV screen.