, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 27-37

Steerable projection: exploring alignment in interactive mobile displays

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Abstract

Emerging smartphones and other handheld devices are now being fitted with a set of new embedded technologies such as pico-projection. They are usually designed with the pico-projector embedded in the top of the device. Despite the potential of personal mobile projection to support new forms of interactivity such as augmented reality techniques, these devices have not yet made significant impact on the ways in which mobile data is experienced. We suggest that this ‘traditional’ configuration of fixed pico-projectors within the device is unsuited to many projection tasks because it couples the orientation of the device to the management of the projection space, preventing users from easily and simultaneously using the mobile device and looking at the projection. We present a study which demonstrates this problem and the requirement for steerable projection behaviour and some initial users’ preferences for different projection coupling angles according to context. Our study highlights the importance of flexible interactive projections which can support interaction techniques on the device and on the projection space according to task. This inspires a number of interaction techniques that create different personal and shared interactive display alignments to suit a range of different mobile projection situations.