Tickle Me Apple: iPhone App Transmits Tingly Touches

Researchers are already working on a device that will let you make out with your online love from afar, so why not an app that lets you tickle each other as well? A lab at the University of Electro-Communications is the birthplace of this strange iPhone interface that will bring you closer to the people you miss by giving you some simulated physical contact.

The interface uses the peculiar tendency of the human body to feel like it is being tickled even if no physical contact is being made. If it is suggested that someone is tickling us – if they wiggle a finger toward an underarm, for example – we often feel as ticklish as if the finger had actually made contact.

This peculiar app works in the palm of your hand, using a pre-loaded image of a palm to make it look like your own hand is showing through your iPhone. As the other half of your lovebird pair moves his or her finger across their own screen, an image of a finger appears on your screen, tickling your palm. A slight vibration from your iPhone reinforces the feeling of being tickled. The app is only in its first stages at the moment, but the team hopes to eventually create a version that can be used while two users are looking into their own cameras for some face-to-face tickle time.

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See more in Phones & Mobile or under Gadgets. May, 2011.
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