Gaiters: Exploring Skin Stretch Feedback on Legs for Enhancing Virtual Reality Experiences

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PubDate: April 2020

Teams: National Taiwan University,National Chiao Tung University

Writers: Chi Wang, Da-Yuan Huang, Shuo-Wen Hsu, Cheng-Lung Lin, Yeu-Luen Chiu, Chu-En Hou, Bing-Yu Chen

PDF: Gaiters: Exploring Skin Stretch Feedback on Legs for Enhancing Virtual Reality Experiences

Abstract

We propose generating two-dimensional skin stretch feedback on the user’s legs. Skin stretch is useful cutaneous feedback to induce the perception of virtual textures and illusory forces and to deliver directional cues. This feedback has been applied to the head, body, and upper limbs to simulate rich physical properties in virtual reality (VR). However, how to expand the benefit of skin stretch feedback and apply it to the lower limbs, remains to be explored. Our first two psychophysical studies examined the minimum changes in skin stretch distance and stretch angle that are perceivable by participants. We then designed and implemented Gaiters, a pair of ungrounded, leg-worn devices, each of which is able to generate multiple two-dimensional skin stretches on the skin of the user’s leg. With Gaiters, we conducted an exploratory study to understand participants’ experiences when coupling skin stretch patterns with various lower limb actions. The results indicate that rich haptic experiences can be created by our prototype. Finally, a user evaluation indicates that participants enjoyed the experiences when using Gaiters and considered skin stretch as compelling haptic feedback on the legs.

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