Staying safe and taking care of ageing family members are important aspects of a peaceful day-to-day life. Rather than having 24/7 nurses or guards in the home to check on ageing family members or detect intruders, Inner Peace is a patented alternative costing a fraction of such services. Elliptic Labs demonstrated the new solution at Mobile World Congress 2017, showing how a person entering a room can turn devices on or off, and how ultrasound can detect the presence of people in a room or detect when a person is not moving. Inner Peace can be used to generate alerts or even be used for intrusion detection.
Inner Peace is built on Elliptic Labs' Inner Beauty technology launched in 2016, which turned Xiaomi’s Mi MIX smartphone into a breakthrough device due to its bezel-less display. Inner Beauty replaces the phone's hardware proximity sensor with ultrasound software and frees up space inside the phone, allowing the functional area of the screen to reach all the way to the top edge of the phone.
Applying Inner Peace to presence detection in a room can add an important new capability to personal assistants like Amazon's Echo and Google Home by detecting the presence or absence of movement. With ageing populations, this technology can detect if a home’s occupants aren't moving and thus require an alert to family members or medical personnel. Alternatively, if programmed to notice intruders, the owners can be notified.
With Inner Peace deployed to smart home devices, appliances can switch off when no one is near, saving valuable power, with no blind spots to worry about. Compared to camera-based or infrared technologies, this ultrasonic approach enables an 360-degree dome field of view, has no direct line-of-sight needs, works in bright light or darkness, requires up to 95% less power, and is less costly. Other potential applications could include gesture recognition and presence triggers, avoiding the need for always-on voice recognition system.
"Elliptic Labs has a history of disrupting electronic device markets with our advanced ultrasound technology," says Laila Danielsen, CEO of Elliptic Labs. "Just recently, our technology was behind the first bezel-less phone from Xiaomi. Ultrasound is starting to give key consumer technologies an added advantage. We detect the natural gestures and motions that we make everyday, so it’s a straightforward progression that we would use ultrasound for daily human machine interaction (HMI). We're working with OEMs now to deploy Inner Peace, and expect to see home IoT products with ultrasound in the market by 2018."
Elliptic Labs’ ultrasonic technology provides proximity sensing features and touchless user experiences for consumer devices, delivering a natural extension of human interaction to consumer devices. The technology can be integrated with smartphones, wearables, and IoT devices. Ultrasound offers a combination of high resolution, 180-degree interaction space and low power consumption compared to cameras or other sensing technologies.
Elliptic Labs is a privately held company with headquarters in Oslo, Norway, and offices in San Francisco, California, and Shanghai, China.