Adding Touch to Ring Tones
Opinion: Immersion's new tool lets companies build downloadable vibrations that can be played on upcoming cell phones from Samsung. Too bad the business model is more lockdown than open source."Im picking up good vibrations,
Shes giving me excitations,
Good, bop bop good, good vibrations." The Beach Boys had it right, and their breezy pop anthem "Good Vibrations" keeps gaining relevance beyond hippie surfers. Its latest sphere of influence: the cell phone. Haptics pioneer Immersionthe folks who brought you force feedback game controllers, Logitechs iFeel mouse and BMWs flawed iDriveare driving that same technology into cell phones. Samsung will release the first haptics-enabled phone in November, and the company stopped by Friday to demonstrate the technology in advance of a big announcement Sunday night at the CTIA Wireless show in San Francisco.
How does it work? That same vibrating motor found in most modern phones can be controlled via a small piece of Immersion software. Add that and the companys bundled "VibeTonz Mobile" player, and the motors intensity and duration can be modulated programmatically. That lets users assign customized vibration patterns, instead of or in conjunction with ring tones, to identify inbound callers.