Posted by:Shyam Sundar March 21st, 2011

Gyroscopes are used to measure pitch, roll and yaw. Paired with an accelerometer that measures acceleration (and vibration), mobile developers can create applications that can sense motion on six axes – up/down, left/right, forward/backward, combined with rotation around three perpendicular axes – pitch, yaw, and roll.

With a gyroscope, you can simulate things like looking around a room, turning an object on the screen or moving things around. First person shooter games were the first apps to take advantage of the gyroscope. For example, Rage HD, by id Software, allows you to hold your tablet in front of you like a virtual window and kill bloodthirsty mutants with fullgyroscopic control.

Accelerometer predated the gyroscope on mobile devices so there are a ton of apps that make use of the accelerometer. For example, the “shake to shuffle” feature and racing games like Need for Speed make use of the accelerometer.

Combined with the phones multi-touch display and motion sensors like the gyroscope and accelerometer, developers can create a more immersive environment on the mobile device when compared to the desktop. Everything from panoramic photography to racquet games are now possible on a mobile device that you can carry in your pocket.

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