Everyone who’s been using the new Remote Controller gestures on XperiaTM Touch will know that they make watching movies and videos super interactive, fun and easy.
For those who need reminding: the Xperia Touch uses Sony’s innovative SXRD projection display technology to turn any flat surface into a touchscreen. If you watch movies, boxsets and videos on your phone but want to see them on a bigger screen, you’ll absolutely love it.
By showing the flat of your hand to the Xperia Touch, you can bring up a control panel, and move your hand up, down, left and right to move between icons. Once you’re on the icon you want, make a fist to select. These gestures allow you to perform a range of actions, including activating Google Voice, muting your content and controlling the volume. Find out how to use the gesture controls here.
To find out more about how the Sony team came up with these incredible gestures, we spoke to lead engineer Yuichiro Saito (left) and marketing lead Nozomi Maeda (right):
The new gestures on Xperia Touch mean you can use your hand as a remote controller. When you try these gestures yourself, they are very intuitive. It makes complete sense to make a fist when you select an item – but how did you come to deciding what action did what?
Saito-san: From a user experience point of view, I thought ‘Palm to Fist’ is a very easy action and easy to understand as ‘select’. From a technical point of view, the device can easily recognise Palm, Fist and One finger, which mean these gestures offer great, reliable performance.
When you want to summon the control panel of the device with the flat of your hand, it is almost as though you are saying ‘hello’ to the Touch. Was this deliberate?
Saito-san: Yes! I imagined saying hello and waving my hand to the Touch.
How much testing goes into each new gesture to make sure it’s perfect?
Saito-san: After implementing these new Remote Controller gestures, we tested the features for around two months to ensure detection and recognition were spot on.
These gestures are ideal for people who use their Touch to consume content via an app. How important was content consumption in developing new gestures?
Saito-san: Extremely important. More and more people are using apps to enjoy films, games and music, so we wanted users to enjoy their content in a relaxed fashion, whether they’re using their Xperia Touch while watching on the sofa or elsewhere in the home.
How are people using Xperia Touch?
Nozomi Maeda: In several ways. Most of the time fans of Xperia Touch use the device to watch videos or movies on the wall at home. But some people take it to the kitchen and use it on the countertop, especially if they want to see a recipe while they’re cooking. This is so useful because you don’t have to worry about getting greasy fingers or water droplets on your phone. Kids seem to really enjoy playing games on the Touch, while outside of the home we’re seeing it used in restaurants, hotels and for business meetings.
Xperia Touch is beautifully designed – was it important that the gestures were also elegant?
Saito-san: Absolutely, but the main thing is that people enjoy using them.