Companies have been offering phones, tablets, and other devices with stylus or digital pen support for years. But most have relied on a passive stylus that touches your screen or an “active” stylus that communicates with your device electronically.
Chip maker Qualcomm is showing off something new — a stylus that can work with a phone or tablet wirelessly… through sound.
The company’s Ultra Sound NotePad demo shows how a device with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor and special microphones can listen for vibrations made by a pen. What’s unusual about this setup is that the pen doesn’t even have to touch the screen, it just needs to be near it.
This lets you, for instance, write notes or draw pictures on a piece of paper next to your tablet, and your handiwork can be duplicated in digital form on your mobile device.
It’s not clear whether we’ll see actual products based on this technology anytime soon, or if it’s just a tech demo of the capabilities of Qualcomm’s chips. But the company will be demonstrating the Ultra Sound NotePad in action during the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show.