We present MotionRing, a vibrotactile headband that creates illusory tactile motion around the head by controlling the timing of a 1-D, 360° sparse array of vibration motors. Its unique ring shape enables symmetric and asymmetric haptic motion experiences, such as when users pass through a medium and when an object passes nearby in any direction. We first conducted a perception study to understand how factors such as vibration motor timing, spacing, duration, intensity, and head region affect the perception of apparent tactile motion. Results showed that illusory tactile motion around the head can be achieved with 12 and 16 vibration motors with angular speed between 0.5-4.9 revolutions per second. We developed a symmetric and an asymmetric tactile motion pattern to enhance the experience of teleportation in VR and dodging footballs, respectively. We conducted a user study to compare the experience of MotionRing vs. static vibration patterns and visual-only feedback. Results showed that illusory tactile motion significantly improved users’ perception of directionality and enjoyment of motion events, and was most preferred by users.
Shao-Yu Chu, Yun-Ting Cheng, Shih Chin Lin, Yung-Wen Huang, Yi Chen, and Mike Y. Chen. 2021. MotionRing: Creating Illusory Tactile Motion around the Head using 360° Vibrotactile Headbands. In The 34th Annual ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology (UIST ’21). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 724–731.