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Mood rings were popular in the 1970s. Mobile devices may be the modern day mood ring. Fast Company posted a story about new emotion-detecting software launched at TechCrunch50. Affective Interfaces claims that it has developed an ultra-accurate system that can detect emotions correctly over 85% of the time.

Emotional Mobile User Interface Design

The Affective Interfaces website welcome message reads: “Knowing what your customers are doing is great, but wouldn’t you like to know why?” Harvesting information from consumers is a great use of the program. Focus groups these days cover everything from new product perception to jury trial preparation and they are labor intensive to arrange and costly to run. Fast Company notes that Affective Interfaces could potentially remove human monitors from the equation, saving a ton of money. Additionally, hundreds of users could be part of a group eliminating the need for companies to conduct expensive testing on small numbers.

Taking this a step further, it would be amazing if advertisements could be presented at an opportune emotional moment based on a user’s personality and demographic profile. For example, at the end of the day, a tired mom might see a vacation commercial or a mattress sale announcement. The same mom on a treadmill in the morning might see a commercial for a sports drink or athletic shoes.

Intelligent interfaces on a consumer device could detect frustration on a user’s face and adjust themselves accordingly. A frustrated user would could get more of a stripped down simple user interface and then get more options later as frustrations went away. This could be a great benefit for new users or those that aren’t technologically savvy.

Additionally, the entertainment industry could tweak content choices based on your current emotional state. Music, movies, games and applications could be matched to a particular mood.

What about using emotion detection to monitor a loved one turning it into a potentially an important relationship tool. Let’s say you have the ability to check the emotions of your spouse before you leave the office. Confrontational or angry? Stay at work longer or hit happy hour before you pull into the driveway.

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