Motion-sensing technology hit the mainstream with Nintendo's Wii gaming system, and now cell phones are getting in on the action. Motion-sensing devices that use accelerometers aren't new, but integrating them into cell phones has been slow going. Video gesture control technology pioneer GestureTek is taking a different tack with its EyeMobile gesture recognition technology. It's essentially a software upgrade that uses a phone's camera to detect motion. That motion is translated into joystick-like functionality, menu scrolling and shuffling actions. The ubiquity of camera phones gives GestureTek's approach a leg up on hardware-based motion sensors.
"The idea of making a much more intuitive way to access the phone's functions without having to access all those small buttons is the major advantage," says Francis MacDougall, co-founder and CTO of GestureTek. In the U.S., Verizon has already put out games that take advantage of the technology, but entrepreneurs can look forward to more applications in the near future. Map navigation using gestures is one to look out for. Eventually, mobile web navigation, photo browsing and zooming will reach a phone near you. It's all part of a larger trend to make cell phones more user-friendly for increasingly advanced applications.