Vaguely reminiscent of the sleek and fantastically simple, clean interfaces conjured up in the blockbuster movie Minority Report, Israeli-based Else is promising to bring a new breed of smartphone interface to your right hand. Else, a subsidiary of Israeli company Emblaze, has developed an advanced prototype of a smartphone and operating system that employs a series of thumb-friendly fan menus in place of the ubiquitous grid of colorful icons.
Dubbed the “sPlay” interface, virtually every phone function can be controlled with just your thumb, right down to zooming in and out on a picture. After selecting a textual wedge of the fan menu, further selections will splay out — allowing users to quickly fan through their contacts, for example.
The 3G device and accompanying interface is expected to begin making it into the hands of consumers in the second quarter of this year, though pricing and availability is still anyone’s guess. While the phone’s fan menu can reportedly be set to display from the left side of the display, the company does not plan to ship a left-handed version of the phone — requiring unfortunate left thumbs to make the long journey across the screen to access touch-sensitive hardware buttons on the right side.