Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have come up with a technique that adds sensitivity to lips, teeth, and tongue in the metaverse. If implemented at scale, the technology has the potential to improve the immersive experience in virtual worlds. Here’s how it works!
Lips, Teeth, and Tongue Sensitivity in Metaverse
According to the researchers, the system uses airborne ultrasound waves to create sensations on the lips, teeth, and tongue. It is capable of producing haptic effects, including point impulses, swipes, and persistent vibrations targeted on the mouth.
The device consists of a phased array of 65 transducers. The best part is that it can be attached to the bottom of VR goggles, thus, eliminating the need for an additional standalone accessory.
To demonstrate the capabilities of the mouth haptics system, the researchers showed various activities such as drinking water, brushing teeth, feeling raindrops, and even walking through spider webs. “Every time you lean down and think you should be feeling the water, all of a sudden you feel a stream of water across your lips,” said Vivian Shen, a second-year Ph.D. student at the Robotics Institute.
Of the tested effects, the researchers noted that not all effects were equally useful. Notably, it seems like the test volunteers expected the sensations throughout the body while walking through cobwebs, as opposed to just the mouth region. That said, the volunteers did mention that the mouth haptics improved their overall VR experience. You can check out the demonstration in the video below:
While it’s good to see that the device fits right into the VR goggles, it does look out of place at the moment. The researchers are aware of this limitation and are working to make the device smaller and lighter alongside adding new haptic effects.
It remains to be seen how this device turns out post some more work on it. Do you think this technology can safely become a part of the much-hyped metaverse universe? Let us know your thoughts on it in the comments below.