The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is Tobii’s latest innovative eye-tracking device that provides accurate and precise eye tracking for research and commercial use. With its small, lightweight yet robust design and advanced features like full HD gaze data, binocular eye tracking, and live metrics, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is an ideal tool for UX research, marketing research, psychology studies, and more.
If you’re looking to gain valuable insights into human behavior and decision-making through eye tracking, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is one of the best options available. In this review, we will take a closer look at the key features, specifications, and performance of the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 to help you determine if it’s the right eye tracker for your needs.
Tobii Eye Tracker 5
Tobii Eye Tracker 5, Celebrated by players, PC gaming device capable of tracking both head and eye movements, flex mount
The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 boasts a sleek and compact design, measuring 11.3 inches in width and 1.1 inches in height. It features three glossy pads on the front, with the camera located at the center pad and two infrared illuminators on the sides. The device comes with a 2-foot USB cable that can be extended up to 3.3 feet with the included extension cable.
Designed to be mounted just below your monitor, the Eye Tracker 5 features a magnetic back that works with two adhesive-backed metal strips for easy attachment to your display's bottom bezel. The device snaps on securely and comes with a wider flex mount for use with curved monitors. Overall, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 offers a simple and hassle-free installation process.
What Software Does it Use?
The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 comes with several software applications to provide a seamless user experience. The Tobii Experience software tracks all eye movements and handles calibration, along with Windows-level features like mouse movement and app switching. The Tobii Game Hub manages individual games and their eye-tracking integration, while Tobii Ghost provides a Twitch extension for streamers who want to share where their gaze goes while playing games.
Calibration through Tobii Experience is a quick and easy process. Users simply sit comfortably in front of their monitor and follow the on-screen prompts until calibration is complete. The Home tab in Tobii Experience displays a floating circle where the user is looking, confirming that the device is working correctly.
If more than one person wants to use the Eye Tracker 5, separate profiles and calibration are required for each user through Tobii Experience. However, if the user wears glasses, the eye-tracking technology will work through the glasses without requiring separate profiles.
While Tobii Experience supports multiple users, it may not work as well with multiple screens. The Eye Tracker 5 can only track gaze for the monitor it is mounted under, and Windows-level features like automatic computer locking or screen dimming may not work across multiple monitors.
What About its Window Features?
The Windows-level features of the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 work well, though some limitations exist when using multiple monitors. The device can quickly and consistently log users into their PC as a Windows Hello-compatible device. Alt+Tab app switching also works very well by locking into the tile of the window the user wants to switch to as they look at it.
One thing to be aware of when using the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is that its infrared reflection may be picked up by other devices, such as a Logitech webcam. While the infrared reflection is not visible to the naked eye, some webcams may detect hotspots on the user's chest where the infrared is being reflected. This can be a minor issue, but it may cause confusion during video meetings or calls.
Fortunately, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5's magnetic strip makes it easy to detach the device for meetings or situations where it is not needed. Users can simply remove the Eye Tracker from its magnetic mount and reattach it when they are ready to use it again. Overall, while the infrared reflection issue may be a minor inconvenience, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5's easy detachment feature makes it a non-issue.
However, mouse movement is limited to one screen, which is a drawback for users who prefer a multi-monitor setup. Similarly, features like automatically dimming the display or locking the computer after the user looks away for a while may not work effectively when using multiple monitors, as the device can only ensure that the user is looking at the screen it is mounted under. As a result, these features may activate when the user does not want them to.
Tobii Eye Tracker 5 Set-Up and Installation
Setting up and installing the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is a quick and straightforward process. The device comes with a small metal strip with an adhesive backing that attaches to the bottom of your display, and a magnet on the Tracker itself keeps it in place. For curved monitors, the device includes a mount with adhesive velcro pads that hold the Eye Tracker securely in place.
The installation of the software is also simple. Users just need to plug the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 into their PC via USB and follow the on-screen prompts for set-up and calibration. Calibration is an easy process that involves staring at spinning dots on the screen until they burst. Once enough dots have been stared at, the device is ready to use.
Overall, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 offers a hassle-free installation process that can be completed quickly, allowing users to start using the device right away. The device's magnetic mount and rugged velcro solution for curved monitors also ensure that it stays securely in place.
Gaming With the Tobii Eye Tracker 5
The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is particularly impressive when used for gaming. Also, the Tobii Experience software includes the Tobii Ghost feature, which allows viewers to see exactly where the user is looking on the screen. While it is a neat feature for streams, the real brilliance of the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 is its integration into games.
There is a solid lineup of games that support Tobii Eye Tracking, and the effect it has is impressive. For example, in Tomb Raider, moving your gaze around the screen while exploring a massive cavern makes the environment feel lifelike and adds depth to the otherwise 2D image. Tilting your head up causes the game's protagonist, Lara Croft, to follow your gaze and unfold the scenery around you, which is both natural and adds significantly to the overall gaming experience.
So, it has great potential for gamers, as it can make games feel more immersive and lifelike. The device's accuracy and precision make it a valuable tool for a wide range of games, from first-person shooters to strategy games.
How It Will Benefit You In Gaming?
The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 has significant potential to enhance the gaming experience. For example, in American Trucking Simulator, the device's eye-tracking technology creates a realistic feeling of depth, making it feel like you're actually sitting in the cab of a big rig. Checking mirrors and focusing attention on different parts of the environment feels more natural with the Eye Tracker, adding to the overall immersion of the game.
In action games like Tomb Raider, the Tobii Eye Tracker 5 allows the user to aim at enemies with a mere glance, making it easier to target and take out enemies quickly. Other games, such as Assassin's Creed Odyssey and Far Cry 5, also support the device's eye-tracking features, providing a subtle yet powerful way to add realism to the gaming experience.
The device's eye-tracking technology can make it feel like the user is truly immersed in the game world, adding a new level of realism and interactivity to the gaming experience.
What Are Some Downsides?
Eye-tracking technology has a lot of potential to make gaming and work easier, and Tobii has proven that the technology itself is solid. The Tobii Eye Tracker 5 accurately tracks the user's gaze across the screen, but implementation is a stumbling block, with limited functionality in most supported games and the inability to apply Windows features to a multiple-monitor setup.
While Tobii is leading the way with eye tracking, the Eye Tracker 5 does not offer a lot of vital functions as a peripheral and control device. Serious streamers and gamers may appreciate the ability to share and study where their gaze falls during matches, but for direct control over games or PCs, the device falls short.
However, this does not mean that eye tracking is a dead end. Tobii has developed impressive technology that could prove invaluable for virtual and augmented reality, and the device is a fascinating technological plaything that hints at a possible future of how we'll interact with our devices.