Around-the-head tactile display
HapticHead is a novel around-the-head tactile display which can be used in a variety of applications such as guidance utilizing moving tactile cues, important tactile notifications or immersive Virtual- and Augmented Reality experiences.
One of the most interesting use cases and current research directions is aiding visually impaired individuals mostly in micro- but also in macro-navigation.
Developed by the Human-Computer Interaction group at the University of Hannover, HapticHead is under active development and evaluation as of 2020.
HapticHead at CHI 2017
HapticHead can generate moving tactile cues which allow intuitive spatial awareness of nearby virtual or real objects, positions or orientations. This also allows navigating visually impaired people which is an active topic of research.
Applications in Virtual- and Augmented Reality aim to immerse the user in a fully-fletched experience in which a HapticHead display can play a major role in by letting the user feel virtual snowflakes, shockwaves or objects close to their head.
Getting a directional tactile notification directly on the surface of the head in the event of emergency may help save precious time. This kind of notification cannot be missed and is interpreted intuitively, giving the user just that little bit of extra time to react.