Using mid-air haptics to guide mid-air interactions

Timothy Neate (Lead / Corresponding author), Sergio Alvares Maffra, William Frier, Zihao You, Stephanie Wilson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


When users interact with mid-air gesture-based interfaces, it is not always clear what interactions are available, or how they might be executed. Mid-air interfaces offer no tactile affordances, pushing systems to rely on other modalities (e.g. visual) to guide users regarding how to interact with the interface. However, these alternative modalities are not always appropriate or feasible (e.g. eyes-free interactions), meaning that they are not easy to learn from touch alone. Despite the possibility of conveying contactless haptic information in mid-air through ultrasound phased arrays, this technology has been limited to providing feedback on user interactions. In this paper, we explore the feasibility of using mid-air haptics to guide gestures in mid-air. Specifically, we present approaches to guide the user’s hand in cardinal directions, execute a hand gesture and navigate a 2D mid-air plane, which we tested with 27 participants. After, reporting encouraging results which suggest good accuracy and relatively low workload, we reflect on the feasibility and challenges of using haptic guidance mechanisms in mid-air.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHuman-Computer Interaction – INTERACT 2023
EditorsJosé Abdelnour Nocera, Marta Kristín Lárusdóttir, Helen Petrie, Antonio Piccinno, Marco Winckler
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages22
ISBN (Print)9783031422799, 9783031422805
Publication statusPublished - 25 Aug 2023

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume14142 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


  • Mid-air haptics
  • guidance
  • gesture
  • mid-air interfaces


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