Speculation has been growing about what features the new Samsung Galaxy IV, scheduled to launch March 14, might offer. Now, a new report suggests that this successor to the hit Galaxy III will scroll pages using a unique method — eye tracking.
A report in Monday’s New York Times, citing “a Samsung employee who spoke on condition of anonymity” because he was not yet authorized to talk about the subject, said that the new model will scroll down to the bottom of a page, such as a Web page, by following the user’s gaze. When the user looks at the bottom of a page, the next, hidden part of the page will automatically scroll up.
The Times said it is not yet clear what technology will be used to accomplish this scrolling. A Sweden-based company, Tobii, has received a fair amount of press recently for its infrared-based eye tracking technology. In January, Samsung filed a trademark in Europe for the name Eye Scroll, and, last month, for Samsung Eye Scroll in the U.S.
The U.S. application describes software “having a feature of sensing eye movements and scrolling displays of mobile devices, namely, mobile phones, smartphones and tablet computers according to eye movements; digital cameras; mobile telephones; smartphones; tablet computers.”
Eye-tracking software would be the next step after an existing Samsung feature offered in the Galaxy S III. That feature, called Smart Stay, uses its front-facing camera to keep a screen lit instead of being dimmed when there is no interaction, if a user is looking at it.
Whether or not a ground-breaking technology like eye-tracking makes it to the S IV, Samsung is doing its best to stoke the fires of anticipation for the unveiling in New York City. A teaser video has been posted to YouTube, in which a young boy…