The world of gaming is changing, Immersion is leading the charge.
In collaboration with Google, we’ve launched a new category of mobile games – Games You Can Feel, spotlighted this week in the games section on Google Play. The games feature TouchSense® Engage, Immersion’s haptic technology for making mobile games rumble, shake, pop, and zap on your mobile device. The wide range of games available, including fan favorites Angry Birds Friends by Rovio and Trials Frontier (two new developers with Immersion) to Clouds and Sheep by Handy Games and Basketball Tournament by Fat Bat Studios.
It’s important to note that this haptic feedback is not the same that you’ve experienced in the past. For example, TouchSense Engage has the capability to make it feel like its raining inside your mobile phone. The tactile effects are distinguished enough that you can feel the difference between a basketball bounce and a whiffle ball bounce. This is what is changing the way that you experience the mobile game.
Imagine how much better you would be at playing a mobile game if you had touch as a point of reference for an interaction. Once game designers start to think about the features that can be enabled with tactile effect, a new world of game design opens up. Using your hands to feel the experience adds a basic intuition that goes beyond the audio and visual components of today’s mobile games.
While there is a lot of talk about virtual reality and augmented reality out there (see a recent blog post from Immersion on virtual reality at GDC 2015), haptic technology is here now. We can get pretty far with the motor that is currently on your mobile device and Immersion’s TouchSense Engage. Download your choice of game from Google Play at https://play.google.com/store/apps/collection/promotion_30014e7_haptics_games
One additional note: Haptics created using TouchSense doesn’t consume the same about of battery as silent mode. TouchSense Engage precisely controls the actuator to optimize battery consumption. One less hurdle to trying it out today.
Haptics started off 2014 strong, as one of JWT Intelligence 100 Things to Watch in 2014. And that was just the beginning – during the remainder of the year the haptic development just kept coming. There were haptic-enabled bicycles, shoes, rings, and space robots…yes, space robots. Haptic innovations was grabbed the attention of innovators and businesses alike, as something to feature in their latest and most engaging games, applications, and devices.
As the report describes, “Haptic, or touch feedback, technology uses stimulation live vibration, small electrical charges or pressurized air to extend digital experience into the physical realm.”
And while some of the innovative tech that made headlines in 2014, such as ultrasound haptics, were much more futuristic, Immersion made great strides in furthering the technology roll out in the market. Immersion technology is now embedded into more than 1.5 billion consumer devices across four of the five top cell phone manufacturers. Samsung, LG, Xiaomi and others expanded their portfolio of phones that use Immersion TouchSense technology. And we’ve seen more than 100 million downloads of games featuring tactile effects.
In the wearables space, Immersion’s technology was launched on the Samsung Gear watch. We were not, however, so much involved in the Huggies pregnancy belt, an interesting product launched in Argentina that allowed expectant dads to feel their babies moving inside their pregnant partner’s womb.
Where does that leave us? We’ve launched new capabilities around adding tactile effects to mobile games and advertising, and expect 2015 to be even bigger. Stay tuned to see how we’re expanding our network and getting content “Enhanced with Tactile Effects” in everyone’s hands.