On Tuesday, Ractiv launched Touch+, a device that turns any surface into a touch surface. Touch+ can connect to any computer and consists of two “normal” cameras seated in one rectangular form factor. The company says that the “magic” resides in the software.
“While 3D tracking tech is fun to play with, Touch+ is the first to give it a very practical application that everyone loves using: multitouch,” Darren Lim, Ractiv Co-Founder, explains. “We hope Touch+ will lead the way in showing how much more we can achieve by bringing multitouch and gestures to computers and other devices.”
Touch+ “sees” the user’s hands, and tracks their positions using what the company calls advanced computer vision algorithms. Since the cameras do not rely on infrared, lighting is not a problem. A representative told Tom’s Hardware that Touch+ is more sensitive to movements, so users aren’t waving their hands around like maniacs: small gestures will work just fine.
According to the company, the two-camera setup allows Touch+ to work at a short range and be undisrupted by other infrared sources. This touch solution also provides a portable stand so that the device can be placed at other locations other than the monitor or laptop screen. This allows users to turn slide presentations on a wall into a touch-based presentation, and more.
“The inspiration for Touch+ came from using a laptop on a bus and wondering what it would be like to have multitouch on the keyboard all the time so our hands wouldn’t have to keep moving all over the place–which, needless to say, is tricky in a confined space," Ractiv Co-founder Lai Xue explains. "After early prototyping with lasers to create a single multitouch plane before creating a 3D tracking device, we look forward to sharing this technology with the mass market.”
To see this new tech in action, check out the two videos below. Touch+ is available on the Ractiv website now for the reasonable price of $74.99.