Well, it functions as a touchscreen of sorts, but you donâ€™t actually have to touch anything to interact with it. Instead, Glamos detects motion and sends a signal to the device telling it what to do.
This creates a situation where a user can control a laptop, smart TV, smartphone, or tablet without actually needing to put their hands on anything but the air within a 180-degree area. For devices with a touchscreen already installed, this will let users interact with them from a distance, which could prove useful for situations where their hands are dirty or theyâ€™re doing a presentation from the other side of the room. An example cited by the creators is using a tablet to manage a recipe. Instead of washing their hands to change pages, the user can swipe the air, keeping their tablet clean.
For devices without a touchscreen, the potential use cases are even greater. A smart TV could be controlled without a remote with the user simply â€œtappingâ€� parts of the air that coincide with locations on the screen. Instead of using a clicker, a presenter could change slides on a projector with a gesture in the air. Not only could that be more convenient, but it also looks like something out of Star Trek. This could turn any TV played on a TV in a Wii-like motion game without much effort on the part of the user.
There are a few things that make Glamos stand out from other devices. First, it has a greater range. It can sense a userâ€™s motion within a three-foot radius, which means it can scale to different size screens â€” a large TV or a small smartphone would both function with this device. Its rotating mirror motion sensor allows it to capture motion in a 180-degree area, which the company claims is far greater than other devices on the market.
Glamos will work with all smart TVs, Android, iOS, Mac, and any PC running Windows 7 or later. Outside of those limitations, itâ€™s basically up to the user to get creative as to how they can adapt the device to their lifestyle.
LIDAR technology is often found in self-driving cars and robot vacuums, so itâ€™s a reliable piece of tech. The biggest difference between whatâ€™s used in those devices and Glamos is the size â€” the team has found a way to substantially shrink the device down. This means users could carry it around in their pockets rather than needing an entire bag to lug it around. Itâ€™s only 1.5 inches by 1.3 inches.
When it ships in August, there will be two different versions of Glamos available. First, thereâ€™s the Basic, which connects to the userâ€™s devices via a cable. This version is set to sell for $129. The Pro version works with either a cable or Bluetooth (it only has two hours of battery life when connected wirelessly) and sells for $149.
Itâ€™s important to note that this is still a crowdfunding project, so backers who put down their money are by no means guaranteed to actually receive their devices when August rolls around. The company does have a working prototype, but there are always snags that can pop up during production that can cause a project to be delayed or completely canceled.