Towards identifying distinguishable tactons for use with mobile devices

Author/Creator ORCID





Citation of Original Publication

Qian, Huimin; Kuber, Ravi; Sears, Andrew; Towards identifying distinguishable tactons for use with mobile devices; Assets '09: Proceedings of the 11th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility, October 2009, Pages 257–258;


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This paper describes a study designed to identify salient tactile cues which can be integrated with a cellular telephone interface, to provide non-visual feedback to users when accessing mobile applications. A set of tactile icons (tactons) have been developed by manipulating the pulse duration and interval of vibrotactile signals. Participants were presented with pairs of tactons, and asked to differentiate between each respective pair and rank their salience. Results suggested that the combination of two static tactons is the most effective way to convey tactile information, when compared with dynamic or mixed tactile cues. Further studies will be conducted to refine feedback in order to communicate the presence of graphical objects on a mobile device interface, or to present events and alerts more effectively. The long term goal is to improve access to an interface by using the tactile channel, thereby freeing the visual and auditory channels to perform other tasks.