Intent-driven input device arbitration for XR

Eric Gonzalez
Ishan Chatterjee
Andrea Colaco
Karan Ahuja
ACM CHI(2024)


Interactions with Extended Reality Head Mounted Devices (XR HMDs) applications require precise, intuitive and efficient input methods. Current approaches either rely on power-intensive sensors, such as cameras for hand-tracking, or specialized hardware in the form of handheld controllers. As an alternative, past works have explored the use of devices already present with the user, in the form of smartphones and smartwatches as practical input solutions. However, this approach risks interaction overload---how can one determine whether the user’s interaction gestures on the watch-face or phone screen are directed toward control of the mobile device itself or the XR device? To this effect, we propose a novel framework for cross-device input routing and device arbitration by employing Inertial Measurement Units (IMUs) within these devices. We validate our approach in a user study with six participants. By making use of the relative orientation between the headset and the target input device, we can estimate the intended device of interaction with 93.7% accuracy. Our method offers a seamless, energy-efficient alternative for input management in XR, enhancing user experience through natural and ergonomic interactions.