During a conference in San Francisco, the Pontis project was actively discussed. This is an initiative aimed at enabling people with severe physical injuries to use household appliances. Television, which in many cases is the only window to the world for them, must have an interface that works without physical impact and even without the use of voice commands. Samsung’s current prototype uses a special helmet with 64 sensors that analyze brain waves. It is connected to a computer, which in turn controls the TV.
Special software can track eye movements corresponding to a command that switches channels and adjusts the volume.
Currently, work is underway to create a more convenient interface that works exclusively on measuring brain waves – for people who cannot control the movement of the eyes or individual muscles. Unfortunately, it is too early to say that this decision will soon go beyond the Swiss hospitals where testing will be carried out, and it will only begin in the second quarter of 2019.
At the moment, the hardware is a serious limitation for developers, since the work of the headset with sensors requires the application of a gel layer on the head, which is very inconvenient and may impede its use.
Samsung originally planned to use this technology in smartphones, but abandoned this idea, since TVs have large screens and can be used not only to watch programs, access the Internet and connect with the outside world, but to control a smart home.
It is also worth recalling that not only the Korean manufacturer is working on such solutions. Serious progress has been made in the prosthetics industry. Since 2017, Neuralink, a startup funded by Ilon Mask, has been trying to create an interface for directly connecting the brain and computer.