Smartwatch wearers have to put up with a number of drawbacks. There's the typically crappy battery life, the bulkiness (or ugliness, depending on whose eyes are looking), and the remarks people get when they've been looking at their watch for longer than a passing glance. "Are you in a hurry?" "Is there somewhere else you'd rather be?" "Am I that boring?" Even if the answer to all three questions is yes, that still doesn't explain the situation at hand, or should I say, wrist (pause for groans).
Last month we told you about the Immersion MOTIV platform, which would allow developers to have much more control over the way phones use haptic feedback (the way your phone vibrates). Up to this point, Android haptic feedback has been a very cut and dry affair: it turns on, it turns off, sometimes it's on a little longer, and sometimes it isn't. Immersion, the SDK of which is now available, gives devs the tools to make this a much more varied experience.
When it comes to haptic feedback, which is a fancy term for the way your smartphone vibrates or physically responds to your actions, smartphone users are not used to much variety. Unlike the complicated haptic motors in console gaming controllers, my EVO has a pretty standard and very basic vibrating motor inside, and the only aspect apps can control is the length of the vibration. Boooring.
The Future Of Haptic Feedback
Earlier this week, I met with marketing execs from Immersion, which makes software for those haptic motors that let your handset vibrate.