The only way to do anything on Google Glass, whether it’s texting, using applications or giving commands, is to talk to the device. While the hands-free interface has its advantages, users may not always feel comfortable having private conversations with their devices out in public.
If a recent Samsung patent filing is any indication, Samsung’s Galaxy Glass may have found a way around reliance on voice commands.
A patent filed in August 2013 to the World Intellectual Property Organization and to South Korea’s Intellectual Property Office entitled “Input Method and Apparatus for Portable Device” reveals plans for an augmented reality keyboard projected onto the Glass wearer’s hands. Keys will be virtually augmented onto different parts of the user’s fingers, with the thumbs acting as an input device by tapping different areas of the hands.
According to the patent, the inventors of the Samsung technology believe voice controls are too imprecise and can be impacted by the loudness of the surrounding environment.
“Low recognition accuracy and noisy environment vulnerability are the main obstacles to adopting speech recognition technology,” the patent states. “The speech-recognition-based input has another drawback in that others can eavesdrop.”
So instead of yelling “OK Glass, call doctor about that rash” out loud in a crowded elevator, Galaxy Glass users will be able to tap their fingers with their thumbs to send a text about it instead.
Of course to a passerby it’ll just look like a crazy person frantically fidgeting with their fingers. Whether that’s more socially acceptable than shouting commands at a computer on your face, only time will tell.
Read the full patent here.