Interactive Window Shopping

Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications (FIT) researchers, Heinrich Hertz Institute (HHI) in Berlin, Germany have developed a new type of 3-D camera system that enables consumers to interact with items inside window displays using hand and facial gestures.  The four cameras record the 3-D positions of people’s hand, face and eyes, then transform them into commands for selecting and purchase goods – even after the store has closed.  A woman passing the windows display in a store point to one of bags and the bag appears on a display behind the store window.  The object can be rotated to look it from the back, and she also can make gesture to zoom the object to see every detail.  Those who interested to a good can get other information from the system such as color material, price, availability and information on the manufacturer.  The system doesn’t store any personal data and only the coordinates of the body parts it recognizes are passed onto the visualization.  The interactive shop window not only identifies how many people are in front of the shop window, but it also can suggest on the basis of the gathered data what products and information the people passing by are interested in. Finally, it has customized greeting texts on the display to guarantee a close bond to the customer.  The prototype of the system will be demonstrated at the CeBit Fair in Hannover, Germany on March 1 to 5, 2011 (Research News January 2011, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft).

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