Swedish Eye-Tracking Firm Tobii Raises $50 Million for VR and Smartphones - Dispatch Weekly

November 7, 2016 - Reading time: 5 minutes

Tobii, a Swedish eye-tracking firm, has raised $50 million to invest in virtual reality and smartphones which assist disabled people in using computers.

The technology works by pinpointing where they are looking on their screens.

What is Tobii? 

Founded in 2001, Tobii compromises three business units: Tobii Dynavox, Tobii Pro and Tobii Tech.

  • Tobii Pro is an eye-tracking solutions and services to study human behavior
  • Tobii Dynavoix is an assistive technology for communication
  • Tobii Tech develops Tobii’s world- leading eye-tracking technology for products such as: computer games, cars and virtual reality.

Their vision is “a world where all technology works in harmony with natural human behavior.”

Leading Companies Already Using Tobii’s Eye-Tracking Sensors

Photo Credit: Tobii
Photo Credit: Tobii

Dell, Acer and MSI have launched computers that have Tobii’s eye-tracking sensors and 40 games with Tobii’s technology that have also been released.

The company has said that a large smartphone maker has chosen one of its technologies for their smartphone model.

The eye-tracking sector is increasing in popularity and importance, with Google recently buying eye-tracking firm Eyefluence.

How does Eye-Tracking Work?

By using invisible infrared light to illuminate the eyes, the camera sensors then captures the reflection off the retina and cornea to know in what direction the eye is looking.

Rights Issue

Photo Credit: Tobii Pro Glasses 2
Photo Credit: Tobii Pro Glasses 2

Tobii stated that shareholders representing approximately 40 percent of its voting rights already expressed support for the rights issue.

If it is approved, Tobii will invest 150 million crowns in VR and 150 crowns in smartphone technology between the years of 2017-2019.

The Future of Eye-Tracking Software

Oculus and Samsung Gear VR headsets already have eye-tracking capabilities.

Eye-tracking is a growing trend among security and privacy. It will also have massive potential among gaming industries.

Eye-tracking is already becoming a reality in gaming with a demo from SensoMotoric Instruments using Gear VR where looking at a creature and tapping the control panel is part of the experience.

Eye Tribe is also using eye-tracking to authenticate users and it may soon be developed into a VR headset able to offer specific content applicable to the user.

Would you use a VR headset? Are you excited for the advances in technology it will bring?

DW Staff

David Lintott is the Editor-in-Chief, leading our team of talented freelance journalists. He specializes in covering culture, sport, and society. Originally from the decaying seaside town of Eastbourne, he attributes his insightful world-weariness to his roots in this unique setting.