BBC trials 'Mind Control TV' - say goodbye to your remote control

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.

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

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Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.