A team from Lancaster University has managed to develop a system for his TV which makes it possible for anything to become a remote.
One of the students explained that modern control systems for TVs assumes the user has hands, but this system doesn't make such assumptions meaning its a far more open and accessible means by which anyone can now decide how to control their TV.
The system uses a webcam, and all that is required is for the user to make a circular motion with the object of their choice to begin the allocation of the new object into one of the control widgets. With the new controller a user can adjust the volume, pause, play, rewind and probably almost all of the functions of a normal remote, because the object of choice can also be used like a pointer or mouse meaning that the user can then select any function of the TV.
The student even had multiple objects allocated to different control tasks; he used a mug as a scroller to select between options of different titles in a library, a toy policeman that is in control of play, rewind, and pause, and assumedly a toy SUV for volume control.
This innovation for the TV makes it possible to control it with our bodies, so it seems apt that it comes at time when digital assistants like the Google Home Mini speaker are making inroads into peoples homes and making it possible to control many other things at home with simply our voices.
This innovation theoretically might give two weeks of life back to the average TV watcher over their lifetime, because even if someone removes your regular controller mug then your hand, head or anything can quickly be turned into the new control.
Source: BBC News