You can control Haier's Eye TV using just your eyes
3rd Sep 2012 | 14:10
Chinese brand demos TVs of the future
Blink and you'll miss it, but Chinese brand Haier (pronounced 'higher') is demonstrating some hugely innovative TVs on its IFA stand.
A major manufacturer of TVs and huge in its native country, Haier revealed to us probably the only innovation at IFA 2012 that could genuinely change lives; the Eye Control TV.
After calibrating to our eyes using an eye tracking unit made by Tobii, we were able to control a cursor on the TV screen just by looking. We managed to scroll through a carousel of video, change the volume and double-blink to 'click' to activate content.
That said, it worked better at operating a regular Windows 7 interface that the demo was running off, with moving around the page and double-blinking on programmes and documents easy.
Thought control is also part of Haier thinking, with its Brainwave TV - which debuted at the CES back in January - also making an appearance.
Having donned a headset that monitors electrical signals in my scalp, I managed to make a graphic of a ball rise and fall; rise by freeing my mind from thoughts, and fall while concentrating. For now it's a neat prototype, but the real world applications just for entertainment are, err, mind-numbing.
Haier wasn't done there; we passed a gesture-controlled TV, a completely wire-free TV (powered by magnetic resonance coupling in both the TV stand and surface it sat on, with pictures and sound sent over WHDI) and a transparent TV on our way to see a 55-inch Ultra HD model. Everyone's doing it - IFA 2012 is proof of that - but this 4k-capable TV impressed.
Nearby was a another proof of concept prototype, a 3D Multi-View screen. We've seen this elsewhere - most notably on Samsung's stand where two sets of 3D specs, complete with headphones, allow viewing of two distinctive 2D images. This version uses Polarised 3D specs, but no headphones; it might find use in future if some person wants to search the web on a TV while the other watches TV.
A glasses-less 3D LED was also being demonstrated, this one with 28 separate views thanks to View-Technology, essentially a cylindrical lens, which does appear to make jumps between the line-of-sight less befuddling. 2D footage gets a Full HD treatment, while 3D uses 720p.
Although none were confirmed to come to the UK this year, the Chinese company also unveiled a range of 'Haier Pads' - or HaiPad for short.
The seven-inch Hair-Pad Mini boasts 1024x600 pixel resolution, while the 9.7-inch Hair-Pad Maxi delivers 1024x768; both run on Android 4.0, include mini USB and micro SD, WiFi, 8GB capacity and a mini HDMI output.
Haier also showed a 5.3-inch Android phone-cum-phablet complete with eight megapixel camera, GPS, WiFi and 4GB.