Theoretically ideal for short-term car rental and any scenario involving shared usage between strangers, like fast-food ordering screens, supermarket self-checkouts and train ticket machines, the so-called ‘predictive touch’ tech uses sensors and specifically-developed AI to judge the path of a person’s finger and – they claim – accurately predict which button someone meant to press.
As well as helping to prevent transmission of viruses through touching contaminated surfaces, JLR says that the time it takes to actually select menu options and complete tasks can be reduced by up to 50 per cent. We’d like to add eliminating greasy fingerprints to the list of potential benefits.
JLR says the tech is chiefly software and can be retro-fitted to most touch-screens that have the appropriate hand-detecting sensors; likely to be only the latest models in most cases.
Professor Simon Godsill from Cambridge University’s Department of Engineering led the project. He said:
“Touchscreens and other interactive displays are something most people use multiple times per day, but they can be difficult to use while in motion, whether that’s driving a car or changing the music on your phone while you’re running.
“We also know that certain pathogens can be transmitted via surfaces, so this technology could help reduce the risk for that type of transmission.”