Ever since that scene in Minority Report (spoiler alert but really, it’s from 2002, so…) where Tom Cruise gets his eyeballs ripped out and new ones installed to beat an eye-tracking security system, I’ve been terrified of any eyeball-related technological advances. Enter Samsung’s new phone and it’s rumored “eye scroll” software.
The New York Times‘ Bits Blog says the company’s next big smartphone, the upcoming Galaxy S IV, features something called “eye scrolling.” Cue Minority Reportesque terror!
Okay, so no ocular cavities are going to be plundered in the utilization of this technology, but it does involve using your eyeballs to detect where the phone should be scrolling on its display.
An anonymous Samsung employee tells the blog that it’ll work by tracking a user’s eyes. So when you get to the bottom of a page, it’ll realize you need to see more and scroll down to show you more text. Or maybe if you roll your eyes at celebrity antics it’ll reply with a, “I know, right!?!?”
It’s unclear what technology is used in the software to track users’ eyes, and the source didn’t say whether or not the company will show off this feature at the Galaxy S IV press conference on March 14.
This appears to be a reality, as Samsung apparently filed for a trademark in Europe in January under “Eye Scroll,” and “Samsung Eye Scroll” trademark in the United States last month.
In that filing, it’s described thusly: “Computer application software having a feature of sensing eye movements and scrolling displays of mobile devices, namely, mobile phones, smartphones and tablet computers according to eye movements; digital cameras; mobile telephones; smartphones; tablet computers.”
There’s also something it wanted to trademark called “Eye Pause” which would probably stop the scrolling? Or something else dealing with tracking your eyeballs and doing things as a result. Shudder. But also? Maybe kind of cool, as long as no one takes my eyeballs anywhere.
Samsung’s New Smartphone Will Track Eyes to Scroll Pages [New York Times]