The latest crazy idea from Google are touch cables that allow you to remotely control your smartphone


Nicolas Rivera – May 19, 2020 – 17: 56 (CET)

Google has developed a touch cable that allows you to control music playback without directly touching the smartphone. The technology, however, could have many other applications.

La última idea loca de Google son cables táctiles que permiten controlar remotamente tu smartphone

The most creative side of Google tends to bring out strangely innovative ideas. One of the best-known ideas is the radar-based gesture control system – which years later was dubbed Project Soli and integrated into Pixel 4. The most recent, however, has nothing to do with wireless. In fact, it is just the opposite: they are touch cables that allow you to control devices without touching them directly .

The key is in what Google calls “helical detection matrix” (HSM). In the cable sheath is a series of conductors that detect contact with the skin and, in addition, several fiber optic threads that emit light when they detect contact with a finger. In the video published by the company you can see how it works.

The algorithm developed by Google is the key

The Google touch cable is capable of identifying different interactions: light touches, slides, rotations, etc. To achieve this, Google has developed an algorithm based on machine learning which is responsible for translating gestures into digital signals . This has been trained with a total of 864 examples obtained from a group of twelve different people. These performed nine series of eight different gestures on the cable, which generated enough data for the algorithm to have a precision of 77%.

At the moment, this Google touch cable is nothing more than an experiment from the company's laboratories . However, its implementation in future products could open the door to interesting functions. With this touch cable, for example, a system could be developed that allows controlling the volume of the music that plays in the headphones by touching the laces of a sweatshirt.

“We hope that our project e-textile Inspire others to enhance physical objects with scalable techniques, while preserving industrial design and aesthetics, “concludes the article posted by the company on its official blog.

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