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MWC: Android feels your touch

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At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week, Immersion launched their HD Integrator tool, designed to provide a more interactive Android experience through touch.

Immersion Corporation, a developer and licensor of touch feedback technology, has announced HD Integrator, a new OEM build-time tool for Android mobile devices. HD Integrator allows OEMs to use high fidelity haptics to provide meaningful information and communicate more clearly with users via the sense of touch.

Immersion’s original Integrator product, launched in February 2011, gave OEMs the ability to automatically apply haptic effects throughout the Android UI to provide a more consistent and customized experience. HD Integrator extends the original Integrator platform to tap the specialized capabilities of high fidelity actuators.

‚With HD Integrator, OEMs can easily incorporate dynamic HD haptics throughout the Android UI, resulting in a more responsive and higher quality haptic experience,‚ said Dennis Sheehan, vice president of marketing for Immersion. ‚In addition, HD Integrator harnesses the capabilities of high fidelity actuators to serve as a communication channel to the user, an engaging entertainment platform, and a point of distinction.‚

Enabling new experiences through HD haptics

‚Haptics are traditionally used for reactive interactions, where users press a virtual button and receive touch confirmation. HD Integrator gives OEMs the opportunity to associate haptic effects with new types of information, such as the amount of force and speed used in a phone gesture, application information such as tags, metadata and audio tracks, or data from embedded GPS and accelerometers,‚ explained Chris Ullrich, vice president of user experience at Immersion. ‚The intelligence and responsiveness of HD haptics creates an environment where haptics can augment the mobile experience by communicating this information to the user.‚

Immersion embarked on a series of research & design studies to create the new experiences enabled through HD Integrator. Studying how users build mental models based on expectations from the physical world about how things should look, sound and feel, Immersion identified how haptics helps users anticipate device behavior, providing reassurance and a more intuitive interface. Immersion identified three new and revolutionary core experiences enabled with HD Integrator.

Early evaluation software is available to select device manufacturers today, while a full version of HD Integrator is expected to be broadly available for OEM evaluation in mid-2012. For more information, visit http://www.immersion.com/HDIntegrator

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