‘Textured Television’ Currently Being Developed and Tested by Disney

10 October 2013
Ben Logan

Ben Logan


Passionate about improving services and experiences for the people that use them.

3D viewing is yet to make the impact on home entertainment that many predicted, but the Disney Company have had another big idea in the evolution of television with the development of Texture TV.

Technology developed by researchers at Disney is said to simulate textures on a flat screen and bring the images to life. The texture effect is accomplished by applying an electrical field across a flat screen, which creates friction through electrostatic forces on the skin when a finger is dragged across it.

Disney Research Interaction Group Director, Ivan Poupyrev, explained further: “Our brain perceives the 3D bump on a surface mostly from information that it receives via skin stretching. Therefore, if we artificially stretch skin on a finger as it slide son the touch screen, the brain will be fooled into thinking an actual physical bump is on a screen even though it is smooth.”

He added: “Touch interaction has become the standard for smartphones, tablets and even desktop computers, so designing algorithms that can convert the visual content into believable tactile sensations have immense potential for enriching the user experience.”

Currently undergoing UI testing on larger screens, the technology could usher in a new generation of textured TV that has the potential to revolutionise the viewing impact of movies.

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