HOW AI-POWERED TECH IS ADVANCING TOUCH SYSTEMS
March 29, 2021 | by Gene Halsey
A technological “gold rush” is emerging as artificial intelligence enables users to interact with computers in ways that were unthinkable just a few years ago. In fact, AI-powered technology is giving rise to perceptual user interfaces like voice- and gesture-based recognition, allowing users to interact with kiosks, displays and other devices with the sound of their voice or the movement of their body. Many proponents of the innovative technologies are touting them as alternatives to touch systems, claiming they’ll surpass touchscreens to become the new, dominant modes of human-computer interaction and communication.
But, as history tells us, the user experience determines whether new tech lives or dies, and based on the stand-alone capabilities of voice and gesture, it’s difficult to imagine that either can replace the ubiquity of touch systems. Nor will either fade into obscurity and join the ranks of Blackberries and Palm Pilots.
Rather, we’re on the precipice of a new era of technology, where we can bring together voice, gesture and touch to create an entirely new user experience that harnesses the best of each interface.
It’s true that voice and gesture are commanding enthusiasm in the humancomputer interface industry. But it’s likely touch will continue to dominate the marketplace and serve as the backbone of these new hybrid technologies.
Many reasons account for this, but none more than touch’s intuitiveness. Touch is the first sense we develop as humans, according to scientists, and it plays a fundamental role in our development as humans. Not to mention, people naturally gravitate toward surfaces, materials and objects they can touch with their hands. The evidence of this is clearly seen in the rapid rise of touch systems throughout society today. In fact, current and future generations moving into the workplace already have been primed for and expect touch capabilities in their work environment.
The widespread use of touch hasn’t gone unnoticed by big business and major corporations, all of which have been pouring resources into the integration of touch into the workplace for several years now. But the expansion of touch doesn’t stop there.
A vast majority of retail centers and stores also have moved to touch for their POS systems, informational displays, interactive product catalogs and many other use cases.