NEWS11 March 2010

Eye-tracking firm wins EU development grant

Europe Technology

ESTONIA— Eye-tracking firm Real Eyes has been awarded a €467,000 European Union grant to develop software to make eye-tracking faster, cheaper and more accessible.

The firm won the grant from the European Regional Development Fund for an 18-month project in conjunction with the University of Tartu in Estonia. Real Eyes will supplement the grant with its own money to fund the €1m project to develop proprietary technology and support academic research into how eye movement patterns can be interpreted and categorised.

Real Eyes is expanding its Estonia-based development team to handle the project.

The aim, the firm says, is to open up eye-tracking to more potential clients by simplifying user interfaces for data collection and reporting, reducing turnaround times to a few hours, and bringing down the cost. It hopes to reach a stage where clients can feel confident enough to order customised eye-tracking services through an online system.

Real Eyes’ portable system uses eye-trackers incorporated into computer monitors to track which areas of the screen users are looking at. The systems are used to conduct tests in public locations such as shopping malls, cafés and train stations. The firm has carried out work for online publishers, advertisers and ad agencies, working recently on a project in the US with Euro RSCG. It hopes to broaden its client base to include online research agencies and possibly public sector bodies looking to improve their online service delivery.

Founding partner Mihkel Jäätma told Research: “The technology is there but the solution is not there. There are dozens of companies who have eye-tracking but they don’t have the solutions to use it.”

Commercial director Alex Slater said: “At the moment, every time we get a new client we have to talk to them and educate them. They’re aware that this is a very powerful tool but there are a number of barriers stopping its widespread adoption as a technique.”

Real Eyes was set up in 2007 and has offices in the UK, Estonia and the US.


1 Comment

14 years ago

I've had the pleasure of working with these guys on a web usability study - acres of possibility with the product so hopefully this will help break down a few barriers and make the product more accessible for clients

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