It seems like there is an app for everything these days. But one Bahraini design engineer wants to take it a step further, helping users interact with their smartphones and apps through remote touch and feel.
The Feelix Tactile Bracelet "is a wearable device that resembles a bracelet and communicates information from applications on a smartphone device or computer to the user through the sense of touch," according to the project's page on crowdfunding site Zoomaal.
Thieab Aldossary first launched his concept on the Qatar Foundation-sponsored reality show " Stars of Science. " Following the creation of a working prototype accompanied by several apps that work with the bracelet, Aldossary recently launched his product on Zoomaal, hoping to raise $30,000 for further development.
Utilizing "eight electro-tactile pads that press to the forearm, each pad can trigger up to a thousand pulses a second enabling it to provide multiple varying sensations depending on the number and length of pulses per second, also the strength of the pulses can be varied." When these pads are combined and synchronized, they can be programmed to communicate a large range of varying signals to communicate different information to the user through feeling.
The product will be open-source and open to app developers to work with and develop further. Suggested and possible applications for the new device include feeling music while listening, use in fitness to notify users about speed or timing, for directions, feeling video game events, social media notifications, incoming messages or other phone notifications, and specific applications for the visually impaired or the hard of hearing.
Money raised through the Zoomaal campaign will be used to further develop the tactile pads, redesign the product, build partnerships with app developers, produce a batch of new devices, and produce campaign rewards such as T-shirts and iPad covers. So far the campaign has raised nearly $3,000 with more than a month left to go.
We're looking forward to see if Aldossary's vision becomes a reality.