Tobii, Fujitsu and NTT DoCoMo partner on eyetracking ibeam tablet, promise a peek next month

Tobii's eye tracking Gaze UI hasn't been especially portable so far, but we'll soon see that change through a new collaboration involving Fujitsu and NTT DoCoMo. The trio plan to reveal the ibeam, an Android tablet with Tobii's smaller IS20 (formerly the IS-2) detector taking input just through glances. Together, the partners want to show that an eye-driven interface can be more reactive than plain old multi-touch: think turning a page in an e-book while you're holding on to a subway car strap. We're only getting a brief preview as of today, but we're teased with the prospect of a full look at NTT DoCoMo's CEATEC booth in early October. Whether or not ibeam leads to more than a well-that's-nice prototype, though, is still up in the air.

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Tobii and NTT DOCOMO Show Unique Eye-tracking Tablet

STOCKHOLM--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Tobii Technology, the global leader in eye tracking and gaze interaction, today announced that partner NTT DOCOMO INC., Japan's premier provider of leading-edge mobile voice, data and multimedia services, will unveil ibeam, a concept tablet with embedded eye tracking from Tobii. The ibeam tablet prototype will make its debut at the NTT DOCOMO booth #4B66 at CEATEC in Tokyo, Oct. 2-6.

"This is an exciting step forward as we continue to pursue our vision of a world in which eye tracking enhances our interaction with everyday devices," said Henrik Eskilsson, CEO of Tobii Technology. "We are thrilled to see so many companies taking an interest in exploring the possibilities with Tobii's eye-tracking technology. We will see more and more proof-of-concept prototypes like this as the industry moves closer to realizing the benefits of eye tracking."

Developed in partnership with NTT DOCOMO's manufacturing partner, Fujitsu, the ibeam prototype uses the most advanced and compact eye tracker in the world, the Tobii IS20 (formerly Tobii IS-2), allowing an unsurpassed eye-tracking experience when using the device. The ibeam will also showcase the future possibilities of natural user interfaces for computers and tablets using gaze interaction. With this capability, users can also interact with the tablet hands-free while still retaining complete functionality of the device.

"Since the inclusion of multitouch, location-awareness and gyroscopes in mobile devices, we have witnessed an explosion of creativity from application developers," said Eskilsson. "By introducing eye tracking in prototypes like this, we hope to bring about another surge in this creativity. Eye tracking-enabled applications are much more responsive to the user's attention, creating new possibilities and efficiencies for interfaces, software and games."

Tobii works extensively with many application partners in the consumer electronics industry as it works to bring eye tracking and gaze interaction to personal computers, gaming systems, televisions and vehicles. With Tobii's gaze interaction development kit, developers can quickly get started exploring this new modality and bring a new dimension in user experience to their products. Tobii offers gaze interaction development kits for purchase or rental.

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Tobii, Fujitsu and NTT DoCoMo partner on eye tracking ibeam tablet, promise a peek in October