Per Ericsson CRe-AM Interview

Name : Per Ericsson

Job Title : Project Manager

Organisation : Tobii

Sector : Eye Tracking

Web Link :

Interview Date : 22/10/2015

Location : ICT 2015 Lisbon

Short Biography

Per holds a PhD in Solid State Electronics from Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden. Following hid PhD, he worked in the semiconductor business with research and development of RF, high power and image sensor components between 1998 and 2012. Since 2012, he is a project manager at Tobii AB developing eye tracking hardware and software.


1. What current technologies and tools fulfill your needs in your practice?

Since Tobii is an eye tracking company, my focus naturally concerns development of eye tracking devices. In the EC sponsored project FANCI that was shown at the ICT 2015 event, we work together with partners who also use gesture recognition, face identification and emotion detection. In the FANCI context, we bring these technologies together to improve human-machine interaction. For FANCI, we target automotive applications, but the technologies developed will be generic.

2. What technologies do you see emerging in the next 5-10 years?

Eye tracking will be incorporated into computer games and video games. Eye tracking will make the gaming experience more immersive with, e.g., more natural interaction with other game characters using eye contact.

3. Could you identify any strengths and weaknesses with these technologies?

Eye tracking is currently in a chicken-and-egg situation. There are consumer grade trackers available on the market at very affordable prices, but consumer adoption is still modest due to the relatively few gaming titles available that make use of the hardware. Game developers, on the other hand, have to weigh the effort to implement eye tracking features in their games relative to the expected extra sales. The situation is slowly improving and I believe that, at some point not too far away, we will reach a tipping point where there will be enough eye trackers out among consumers to motivate gaming companies to implement eye tracking in all relevant games.


4. Do you think there are additional technologies or tools needed, or that you would wish for?

I can see eye trackers being installed in laptops already from factory as the next logical step. Tobii has already announced a collaboration with MSi along these lines. Virtual reality is another area where rapid development is taking place and I think eye tracking will fit nicely there as well.


5. If these were available what would you be creating?

Virtual reality with eye tracking will enable fully immersive interactive games, but even in a desktop environment, or on a laptop, eye tracking does contribute significantly to the gaming experience.

6. Can you see any strengths and weakness involved?

The ability to add another dimension to gaming and allowing a much greater sense of immersion is a big strength.

7. What do you recommend to fill the gap between creators and technology providers?

Not considering the commercial side of things, I think that bridging the knowledge gap between the creative minds involved in game creation and the technologists from the eye tracking world will spawn many new ideas on game content and player immersion.