Samsung's next Galaxy smartphone might be controlled by nothing more than the user's eyes, according to a new report in advance of its March 14 unveiling.
"Eye scrolling" will do things like scroll down a page of text when the user's eyes have reached the bottom of the screen, according to a New York Times report.
Quoting an unnamed Samsung employee who has used the phone, the Times said the Samsung Galaxy S IV, the next generation in its popular Galaxy S line, will be more heavily geared toward new software than a physical reboot of the Android-based device.
The Korean company has for all practical purposes announced the Galaxy S IV will be unveiled at a New York City event on March 14.
The Times interviewed Kevin Packingham, Samsung's chief product officer. While he declined to talk about software upgrades, he said hardware upgrades will be significant. "It's an amazing phone," he said.
Reports of an eye-control innovation make sense. Samsung has filed in Europe to trademark a technology called "Eye Scroll" and another named "Eye Pause."
Samsung described "Eye Scroll" as "computer application software having a feature of sensing eye movements and scrolling displays of mobile devices, namely, mobile phones, smartphones and tablet computers according to eye movements; digital cameras; mobile telephones; smartphones; tablet computers."
The Samsung Galaxy S III already has a similar feature called "Smart Stay." It uses the phone's front-facing camera to register whether the user is looking at it and keeps the display screen from going into sleep mode until the user looks away.
Samsung's Galaxy S line has emerged as the strongest challenger to Apple's industry-leading iPhone.
The Galaxy S III shipped 18 million units worldwide from July to September, compared with 16.2 million for the iPhone 4S, according to research by Strategy Analytics.
With the release of the iPhone 5, Apple retook the lead in the final months of 2012, selling an estimated 27 million. But the S III hung in there with another 15 million units sold.