The majority of mobile applications use built-in touchscreens and/or accelerometers to provide direct ways for user inputs. Yet, the need to manipulate the device itself (e.g. touch, tilt) poses usability issues such as occlusion and inaccuracy. To address these issues, research proposed using the built-in magnetometer and magnets to facilitate around-device interactions. However, there is little evaluation in how this technique impacts performance and user experience beyond simple docking tasks. To fill this gap, we explored the mobile gameplay context by implementing an interface that uses rotatory gestures from a magnetic ring as input, and compared two control mappings (angular and linear) with touch and tilt in a usability study using a mobile game. We found that rotatory gestures with the ring, when mapped to angular controls, were on par with touch and superior over tilt, and engendered greater gameplay experience and sense of mapping. Based on our findings, we discuss implications of using this technique for gameplay, as well as other applications.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Around-device interaction, Controller, Magnetism, Rotation
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1145/3338286.3340137
Conference 21st International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services, MobileHCI 2019
Citation
Cheung, V. (Victor), & Girouard, A. (2019). Tangible around-device interaction using rotatory gestures with a magnetic ring. In Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services, MobileHCI 2019. doi:10.1145/3338286.3340137