If sliding our fingers up and down our phones feels like an intuitive scrolling motion today, simply tilting our screens may be the obvious choice of tomorrow when it comes to moving text around a screen. Thanks to a new “smart scroll” patent awarded to Houston-based Innoventions Inc., reading an article may soon be as easy as changing your viewing angle.
“The new patent enhances RotoView technology as it eliminates the need to tilt the phone at an uncomfortable oblique angle,” Dr. David Y. Feinstein, president and CTO of Innoventions, noted. “Instead, where scrolling requires more tilting, RotoView automatically switches to a dynamic scrolling mode where tilt changes controls the speed of scrolling. This makes the screen much easier to see since smaller tilts are required.”
In developing its proprietary new technology, Innoventions saw one key problem that needed an elegant solution: As smartphone users are confronted with an increasing amount of information, all on one tiny screen, they need a better way to wade through the data “intuitively, and preferably, with a single hand.”
As a result, they developed RotoView, which claims to address this problem “by allowing the user to ’tilt'” his or her way through the display. “During RotoView’s Navigation mode,” the company explains, “the user can navigate a large stored virtual display by changing the device’s orientation or with various movements. In particular, it allows user to quickly and efficiently navigate a large display in all directions. Similarly, it can control the changing background view of a game application based upon tilt and movements.”
By making use of the gyroscope and accelerometer sensors already embedded in today’s smartphones, RotoView implementation is a breeze with most mobile devices. Once installed, users will be able to more easily navigate their phones with just one hand, and while the technology is not meant to fully replace touch screens, it allows for increased functionality, elevating existing capabilities to a whole new level.
“For over fifteen years we have been actively developing RotoView to demonstrate the benefits of using tilt and motion gestures to navigate smartphone displays,” added Feinstein. “It demonstrates our company’s ongoing commitment to the development of the tilt-to-scroll technology.”