Advanced Television

Remote control to remain central to TV navigation experience

November 4, 2011

By Colin Mann

Responding to media speculation that voice commands may replace the remote control in the living room, user experience specialist ruwido has emphasised its belief that despite the need to re-evaluate how users explore and interact with their TV services, the remote control device is here to stay.

In response to recent media speculation that Apple is considering using its artificial intelligence software, Siri, to enable any future TV experience it develops to be controlled by voice commands, ruwido welcomed the wider debate into how viewers will navigate the increasing amount of content available to them, but argued that the remote control will remain a central interaction mechanism in the living room.

“There is no doubt that the multi-button remote control devices in use today are unnecessarily complicated and many users want an easier, more intuitive way of navigating and selecting from content menus,” said Ferdinand Maier, CEO, ruwido. “Speculation regarding Apple’s plans for TV has elevated the debate within the industry, the media and on social networks as to how the experience could, and should, be enhanced, and we fully support and believe in this.”

Maier noted that ruwido continually conducts its own extensive scientific user behaviour research, which lays the foundation for any future developments, and confirmed that recently-founded enterprise, ruwido France in Toulouse, was investigating new forms of interaction technologies, consumer behaviour and latest trends. “Combined with over 40 years’ experience in the consumer electronics industry, we have understood for a long time that it is the synchronisation of the mind and senses that enables greater control and provides user experience excellence,” he said.

“One of the main challenges for today’s user interfaces is how to intuitively visualise a large number of content items. Whatever format – in lists or as icons in a grid – today’s interaction mechanisms do not support satisfactory navigation through large quantities of data,” added Maier. “While our studies do not support the concept of voice control as an accurate, reliable or even preferred option among users, we fundamentally agree that greater intuition is required and look forward to continuing the debate with consumer electronics manufacturers and service operators as to what the future holds for the control of video entertainment in the living room,” he concluded.


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