Pilotfish/Synaptics Onyx buttonless prototype


This Monday, designer Pilotfish and sensor maker Synaptics are releasing a prototype of a phone which doesn’t even have any buttons.
Instead, the Onyx device understands signs and gestures, thanks to the sensitive touch pad covering most of its surface. It opens and closes applications when swiped by one or two fingers. The phone recognizes shapes and body parts.

Via Moco.News

Onyx4 From the press release: The new concept phone uses Synaptics’ ClearPad, an optically clear, capacitive touch screen solution, to create a fully adaptive user interface (UI). The ClearPad input system eliminates the traditional mechanical keys found on phones today and dramatically adapts to present the information and controls a user needs at any given moment.

Onyx2More intelligent than conventional touch screens, the ClearPad accurately recognizes not only points and taps, but also shapes, complex gestures, and proximity to the user’s finger or cheek. This creates new possibilities such as assigning functions to two-finger taps, closing tasks by swiping an “X” over them, sending messages by swiping them off the screen, or answering a phone by holding it up to your cheek. The prototype phone uses a dynamic UI, where applications are layered and opened simultaneously, allowing a seamless flow of information between applications.

Onyx5 “Mobile phones are no longer used just for making calls -- they have become a single access point for critical day-to-day information,” explains Clark Foy, vice president of Synaptics. “The Onyx phone is a breakthrough illustration of how advances in interface technology and collaborative design will drive the future of mobile interactions and services.”

Onyx6The Onyx phone is the result of collaboration between Synaptics and Pilotfish, under the philosophy that hardware and software are not two separate fields, but interrelated parts of the overall experience of a product. Utilizing Synaptics’ ClearPad touch screen technology & interaction design, Pilotfish created a cutting-edge user interface and industrial design model for OEMs to innovate upon.

“The real meaning of this product is about opening up the channels between hand, eyes, and device, and giving people access to actions and information in a way not possible with conventional buttons,” says Brian Conner, leader of the design team for the Onyx at Pilotfish in Munich. “When carrying this out, we integrated the approach to designing product form and user interface, and started by focusing on the actions and experiences around the Onyx – the result is a device where the new interaction possibilities are supported and emphasized by the simple, clear form.”


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