Pointing and Selection Methods for Text Entry in Augmented Reality Head Mounted Displays

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PubDate: December 2019

Teams: Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University;The University of Adelaide

Writers: Wenge Xu; Hai-Ning Liang; Anqi He; Zifan Wang

PDF: Pointing and Selection Methods for Text Entry in Augmented Reality Head Mounted Displays


Augmented reality (AR) is on the rise with consumer-level head-mounted displays (HMDs) becoming available in recent years. Text entry is an essential activity for AR systems, but it is still relatively underexplored. Although it is possible to use a physical keyboard to enter text in AR systems, it is not the most optimal and ideal way because it confines the uses to a stationary position and within indoor environments. Instead, a virtual keyboard seems more suitable. Text entry via virtual keyboards requires a pointing method and a selection mechanism. Although there exist various combinations of pointing+selection mechanisms, it is not well understood how well suited each combination is to support fast text entry speed with low error rates and positive usability (regarding workload, user experience, motion sickness, and immersion). In this research, we perform an empirical study to investigate user preference and text entry performance of four pointing methods (Controller, Head, Hand, and Hybrid) in combination with two input mechanisms (Swype and Tap). Our research represents a first systematic investigation of these eight possible combinations. Our results show that Controller outperforms all the other device-free methods in both text entry performance and user experience. However, device-free pointing methods can be usable depending on task requirements and users’ preferences and physical condition.