The touchscreen made phones feel marvelous. You could use your fingers to navigate your entire phone. For the next breakthrough, scientists are working on touchless interfaces.

Researchers from the University of Washington attached a regular touchscreen phone and attached a circuit board with four small loop antennae. It detects interference in the radio waves that phones use to communicate with cell towers.

The authors of the study write, "When the user moves their hand around the mobile phone, their skin, muscle, and bones affect the character of the propagation path by absorbing or reflecting part of the signal."

Which means, touchless interfaces are coming soon. A glimpse of tech in the future:

[via New Scientist Images via Zhao et al.]