The BBC is trialling new technology that allows you to control iPlayer using brain power alone...

How amazing would it be to select and play your favourite TV programmes by just thinking about them - an age where it doesn't matter if you lose the remote down the back of the sofa?

Well, if the BBC's hi-tech trial is anything go by, it might not be too long before this becomes a reality.

The key piece of hardware powering the trial is an electroencephalography (EEG for short) brainwave-reading headset - where sensors placed on the forehead and ear measure electrical activity in the brain. Users in the BBC trial can open an experimental version of iPlayer and select TV programmes just by thinking about them.

Cyrus Saihan, Head of Business Development for BBC Digital said, "our first trial run saw 10 BBC staff members try out the app. All were able to lauch BBC iPlayer and start viewing a programme simply by using their minds. It was much easier for some than for others, but they all managed to get it to work".

According to Saihan, the BBC believes this kind of technology could have a major impact and the future of the user interface, but also accessibility. Not only is being able to think of a programme and start watching on demand an exciting one, it could be a great way of opening up hi-tech user interfaces to those with a broad range of disabilities who struggle to use conventional controls and interfaces.

More after the break

What do we think, could the brain become mightier than the remote control?

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AEJim's picture


Who wants a pesky remote when you can simply relax and watch TV in comfort while wearing your electroencephalography brainwave-reading headset with forehead and ear sensors! A far simpler solution. Smile

ellisdj's picture

What happens when you fall

What happens when you fall asleep watching the TV after a big dinner on a Sunday afternoon, having a nice dream - and certain "Exotic" channels / content start being displayed in front of the Church Going In Laws

Yahoo  Sounds like Great Tech !!



chebby's picture

Don't you need a mind to use

Don't you need a mind to use 'mind control'?

How will Eastenders fans cope?

guidewell's picture

I'm a multiplyi-disabled

I'm a multiplyi-disabled accessibility evangelist who is defeated by generally ill-conceived and illogically laid-out remote controls with their seemingly random and varying microscopic push-buttons and unintelligible legends; I would like to trial and evaluate one of these controls (I have a degree in applied ergonomics and human factors specializing in man-machine interfaces).  How do I apply to join the evaluation programme?