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The effects of spatial auditory and visual cues on mixed reality remote collaboration

Abstract

Collaborative Mixed Reality (MR) technologies enable remote people to work together by sharing communication cues intrinsic to face-to-face conversations, such as eye gaze and hand gestures. While the role of visual cues has been investigated in many collaborative MR systems, the use of spatial auditory cues remains underexplored. In this paper, we present an MR remote collaboration system that shares both spatial auditory and visual cues between collaborators to help them complete a search task. Through two user studies in a large office, we found that compared to non-spatialized audio, the spatialized remote expert’s voice and auditory beacons enabled local workers to find small occluded objects with significantly stronger spatial perception. We also found that while the spatial auditory cues could indicate the spatial layout and a general direction to search for the target object, visual head frustum and hand gestures intuitively demonstrated the remote expert’s movements and the position of the target. Integrating visual cues (especially the head frustum) with the spatial auditory cues significantly improved the local worker’s task performance, social presence, and spatial perception of the environment.

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Notes

  1. https://dottyar.com/.

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  4. https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/polopoly_fs/1.714575!/file/stcp-marshall-FriedmanS.pdf.

  5. https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/polopoly_fs/1.714573!/file/stcp-marshall-WilcoxonS.pdf.

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Correspondence to Jing Yang.

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Yang, J., Sasikumar, P., Bai, H. et al. The effects of spatial auditory and visual cues on mixed reality remote collaboration. J Multimodal User Interfaces 14, 337–352 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12193-020-00331-1

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Keywords

  • Mixed reality
  • Augmented reality
  • Virtual reality
  • Remote collaboration
  • Spatial audio
  • Hand gesture