Development of a universal, intuitive, gesture-controlled remote control

Sub-project: Reliable, fast and low-resource gesture recognition

Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the SME-Innovative Human-Technology Interaction Program

Duration: 2019–2021

The SmartPointer is intended to make the operation of many electronic devices easier and more intuitive. © Universität der Bundeswehr München



Given the many technical devices we use in everyday life, there is a great need for operation to be as simple and uniform as possible. Existing remote controls (e.g. for televisions, radios) are often too complex, and for some devices, such as light switches or blinds, there are often none at all. This is where the SmartPointer project comes in.


Goals and procedure

The aim is to develop a gesture-controlled remote control that enables uniform, intuitive operation of technical devices - especially in the home environment or in care facilities. The SmartPointer is held in the hand like a miniature flashlight. Intuitive pointing and operating with gestures in the direction of the device to be operated selects it, switches it or regulates it continuously. The project relies on the individual gestures of each user, which do not have to be learned separately. Throughout the development process, the user's perspective is consistently taken into account - especially that of older people and those with limited mobility, in order to support them in leading independent lives.


Innovations and perspectives

The absence of gestures to be learned, the simple and unobtrusive ability to retrofit and the low hardware requirements as well as the universal applicability in very different distances from the device - from a few centimeters to about 10 m - are innovative approaches for gesture-based human-machine interaction.