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What The iPhone Needs; Wiimote Capabilities

April 28, 2009 by Ryan Ray 

If you ever stop and think about the technology that is untapped in the iPhone, and the possibilities that could come from taking full advantage of these. Well they really are endless. For example look at how simple the wiimote is. It has all of the controls we are used to from Nintendo built in, just in case you are in classic mode and want the old style remote. The great part about the wiimote though is the gestures. This made playing Tennis, Golf, Baseball, almost realistic. If you swung the wiimote like a golf club it was similar to a real club. If you took a swing with the wiimote it was almost like hitting a real home run. This improved a lot of the gameplay in games, and is guaranteed to be the factor that pushed the wiimote to the top. Even without HD output like the PS3 or XBOX 360.

To make the wiimote work it has an accelerometer built into it. The same of which are found inside the iPhone and iPod Touch. Now the iPhone doesn’t have an infared port that works like the wiimote’s, but it does have Wifi and/or Bluetooth. This could provide a possible means to have the iPhone work as a device to control your computer, or perhaps the PS3 or XBOX 360. I know the PS3 controllers work over Bluetooth, so this is a possible route. With the new 3.0 software I know Sony could make an iPhone app that was a controller for their PS3, atleast a remote right? The first Blu-Ray remote from Apple. The same could be said for the XBOX and the Wii.

iphone-accelerometer

To take it a little further imagine this kind of control for your computer. If you could move the mouse by moving the iPhone around, and then on the screen would be buttons to scroll, left and right click, etc… Customizable really. It could be a great alternative the the regular mouse. Then if you need a keyboard there is a button to bring up a landscape keyboard on the iPhone’s screen. Right now this sounds genius to me, I don’t know about you. Next take the idea of gesture from the trackpad and put it into the iPhone’s accelerometer. If you swiped it up twice it would activate expose, then down twice to bring all your screens back. Swipe to the left three times to go back in your history in Safari, similar to the 3 finger swipe on the trackpad. Even better yet put some of the trackpad gesture on the iPhone screen. Each app has it’s own gestures so when in those apps the iPhone screen recognizes those gestures.

I wonder how hard it really would be to program something like that. I don’t even know if it’s a feasible idea. Is the iPhone’s sensors delicate enough to tell the difference in 3 planes of motion. I know it’s pretty good from going from portrait to landscape mode, but can it pull of rotations? I think this idea looks promising and someone with more knowledge than me should look into this. Perhaps I’m just dreaming, but what do you think about this idea? Is it something the iPhone should have? Thanks for reading.

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